Today GM announced the launch of a new nationwide program to install solar canopy charging stations at their Chevy dealerships across the country. Each canopy, called a Green Zone, will be capable of charging up to 4,500 electric vehicle (EV) batteries a year. With that much positive green energy running through the batteries of their not-yet sold Chevy Volts, GM should have no problem selling off their increased production run of the award winning plug-in hybrid electric vehicle.
The first two dealerships to complete Green Zone construction are American Chevrolet in Modesto, California, and Al Serra Auto Plaza in Grand Blanc, Michigan. “The question isn’t whether to install a solar canopy, it’s where and how many,” said Joe Serra, president of Serra Automotive. “It’s a win for us because the electricity generated will help reduce operating costs, and it’s a win for the environment since solar power helps reduce our carbon footprint.” The cost for each solar canopy comes free to the dealership and is part of GM Ventures’ recent announcement to invest $7.5 million in Sunlogics, a solar technology company that will be manufacturing the solar panels for the company and installing the canopies on dealership property.
GM announced in May that they had installed a solar canopy charging station at their Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant, where all Volts are made, to charge the vehicles after they head out to dealerships. The new Green Zone initiative will take the Volt’s emission-free charging one step further and shows GM’s commitment to the future of green transportation. Each canopy provides enough electricity to power three homes yearly and all excess energy not used to power Volt batteries will be used to supplement the dealerships power needs.