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|AutomobileOctober 8, 2002|
|Home Fueling Station Announced for Natural Gas-Powered Honda Civic at Natural Gas Vehicle Conference|
|WASHINGTON, D.C., U.S.A., October 8, 2002 – Home fueling for natural gas powered vehicles will be more convenient and affordable with the introduction of a new home-based fueling appliance from FuelMaker Corporation shown today at the Natural Gas Vehicle Conference 2002 (NGV 2002) in Washington D.C.
In addition, American Honda Motor Co., Inc., which owns a 20 percent stake in FuelMaker, announced plans to market its natural gas powered Civic GX to retail consumers. On sale since 1998, the Civic GX has been targeted primarily at government fleet buyers.
The FuelMaker home fueling appliance, named "Phill," is the first low-cost, home-based, re-fueling appliance. It can be mounted in a garage and allows natural gas powered vehicles to be re-fueled directly from a homeowner's existing natural gas supply line. Phill is expected to go on sale in late fall 2003 and will have a retail price about $1,000 once high-volume production is reached.
"Home re-fueling will help to increase consumer acceptance of natural gas-powered vehicles like the Civic GX by making home re-fueling affordable and convenient," said Robert Bienenfeld, senior manager of product planning at American Honda and chairman of the Natural Gas Vehicle Coalition board of directors. "Our research indicates people like the idea of being able to re-fuel their vehicles at home."
The Ohio made natural gas-powered Civic GX sedan uses a 1.7-liter 4-cylinder engine to provide driving performance comparable to a gasoline-powered Civic. Civic GX has a range of up 220 miles on one fill and a suggested retail price starting at $20,510. The GX produces nearly zero emissions and is certified by the EPA as the first and only internal combustion vehicle to meet the cleanest engine emission standards (SULEV, or Tier 2 bin2).
American Honda, the U.S. sales and marketing subsidiary of Honda Motor Co., Ltd., was founded in 1959. Honda currently produces automobiles, motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, lawn mowers and engines at its U.S. manufacturing operations using domestic and globally-sourced parts. Honda also maintains R&D centers in California, Ohio and North Carolina that design and develop many of the products sold in America.
FuelMaker Corporation is an environmental technology company providing infrastructure solutions for both the natural gas and hydrogen/fuel cell fueling industries. Development of FuelMaker's core technology, supported by 94 patents, began in 1989. Since then, FuelMaker has built a base business to satisfy the gaseous fueling needs of industrial and consumer markets.
The combination of extensive R&D, a manufacturing and quality focus, and 8,000 FuelMaker Vehicle Refueling Appliances (VRAs) in operation for both natural gas and hydrogen, has resulted in technology and a product line that is recognized around the world as extremely reliable and state of the art. (A VRA is a self-contained system that compresses natural gas or hydrogen and delivers it to the vehicle.) American Honda Motor Co., Inc., purchased a 20-percent interest in FuelMaker Corporation in October 2000.