In continuation of DaimlerChrysler's leadershipin the development of viable fuel cell vehicles, the company announced it willcollaborate with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and UPSwith the goal of creating the first fuel cell delivery vehicledemonstration program in North America."DaimlerChrysler is working on several fronts to put fuel cell poweredvehicles on public roads," said Dr. Dieter Zetsche, president and chiefexecutive officer of the Chrysler Group. "We're pleased to be workingclosely with the EPA and the U.S. Department of Energy to bring substanceand tangible progress to President Bush's vision of accelerating thedevelopment of hydrogen-powered vehicles."The demonstration program will be based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, at the EPANational Vehicle and Fuel Emissions Laboratory. The DaimlerChrysler fuelcell vehicles will be used in normal UPS delivery operation on anestablished delivery route, and they will be fueled at a hydrogen refuelingstation built by the EPA.An F-Cell, a Mercedes-Benz A-Class powered by a Ballard fuel cell, will bedelivered in 2003 for use as an express-delivery vehicle by UPS. In 2004, afuel cell Dodge Sprinter will be delivered as the first medium-duty fuelcell commercial delivery vehicle to be put in service in North America.The company says this program will enable DaimlerChrysler to continue evaluating fuel cellvehicle attributes, such as fuel economy, cold-weather operation anddriving performance. It also will allow the EPA, DaimlerChrysler and UPS togain considerable operational experience with a fuel cell fleet vehicle andhydrogen refueling station.DaimlerChrysler's efforts to put fuel cell vehicles into real-world use, inaddition to this agreement include, 60 F-Cell vehicles and 30 Citaro fuelcell buses that the company will have on public roads worldwide by 2004."Fuel cell vehicles are a part of DaimlerChrysler's balanced portfolio ofenvironmental initiatives which includes improved gasoline engines, cleandiesels, hybrid vehicles, and a wide array of improved renewable fuels tolessen our nation's dependence on oil and further reduce carbon dioxideemissions," said Bernard Robertson, senior vice president, engineeringtechnologies and regulatory affairs. Robertson also mentioned thatDaimlerChrysler has built more than one million flexible-fuel vehicles todate, capable of operating on renewable corn-derived fuel. The company hasannounced two clean diesel passenger vehicle products--the Jeep Libertydiesel and Mercedes E-Class diesel--and a hybrid Dodge Ram pickup truckproduction program, all launching in the United States next year.