SimplexGrinnell, a Tyco International Company and provider of fire and life safety systems and services, recently ordered 200 Ford Fusion Hybrids as part of a company-wide effort to replace 25 percent of its sales fleet with hybrid vehicles.  

The majority of SimplexGrinnell's 7,000-vehicle fleet is comprised of large commercial trucks and vans; however, the fleet also includes 2,000 cars, which are used by the company's sales and leadership staff.

"The Fusion Hybrids will provide us with much greater fuel savings and CO2 reductions compared to the conventional gas vehicles they are replacing," said Jim Spicer, president of SimplexGrinnell. "They also are a perfect fit for our staff."  

SimplexGrinnell, headquartered in Boca Raton, Fla., operates in 150 locations throughout the U.S. and Canada. According to Janice Buxton, senior manager of fleet services for SimplexGrinnell, the Fusion Hybrids will be used primarily in major metropolitan areas where employees do city driving of less than 2,500 miles per month. In order to achieve full efficiency, the company will start placing the hybrids in fairly neutral climates, but will look to expand use in more demanding areas.

The 200 Fusion Hybrids support a Tyco company-wide environmental program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, waste and water consumption by 25 percent over the next five years. The program, known as "Vital World," includes a series of steps the company is taking around the world to reduce its impact on the environment and to help customers reduce theirs.

In addition to contributing to the company-wide initiative to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the Fusion Hybrids also may be used by employees participating in the EcoWheels Green Driver Challenge, which is organized by Wheels Inc., SimplexGrinnell's fleet management company. The program encourages drivers to commit to practices such as reducing idling time, checking tire pressure and planning routes more efficiently.

"Our company is strongly committed to the environment and to reducing our carbon footprint," said Spicer. "By participating in the Green Driver Challenge, we can engage our drivers to do their part in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and add the incentive of tracking in real time the positive effect their commitment has on the environment."  

In addition to Fusion Hybrid, SimplexGrinnell also purchased 200 units of Ford Focus, 50 of Taurus, 28 Fusion gas models and a handful of Edge vehicles.

"All of the vehicles were chosen based on their suitability for the job, operating cost and fuel efficiency," said Buxton.

She said SimplexGrinnell also is looking to integrate the Ford Transit Connect into its fleet.