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Norwalk, pivoting to EVs, will add 4 Teslas to City vehicle fleet

A Tesla Model Y SUV (Photo: Tesla)

Norwalk’s Department of Public Works will add four electric-powered Tesla SUVs to its fleet as soon as July, as it begins replacing its existing Ford Explorers with more energy-efficient electric and hybrid vehicles.

The decision was made last Tuesday when the Common Council unanimously approved spending just over $200,000 on the four Teslas.

“Public Works has been really looking for a couple of years at the best way to be more sustainable with the fleet,” said Chief of Operations Vanessa Valadares. “We decided that, for today, the best option out there would be to go with the Tesla Model Y, replacing some of the Explorers.”

As cars driven by city officials age out of the fleet, she said, the plan is to replace them with more energy-efficient models.

Valadares noted that “Tesla came not only with a very good price but also being able to deliver the cars within a few weeks.”

The city will receive a $7,500 tax rebate on each of the cars, Valadares said, which is partly why she considered it a “really good deal.”

Council member Jim Frayer, who chairs the council’s Public Works Committee where the purchase was first proposed, said the cars were a “great opportunity for us to move further and further into the EV area.”

Council member Nora Niedzielski-Eichner, who has been one of the most vocal members of the council calling for the city to purchase more electric vehicles, said she was very excited to see these added to the city fleet.

“I look forward also to the cost savings from this,” she said. “Not only is this a very reasonable price, but as other cities have found, they require significantly less maintenance than traditional vehicles. I’m hopeful that with reduced gas costs and the reduced oil maintenance and other things, that we may see some savings we can put back into other projects,” she said.

Valadares said the department looked at other electric vehicles, including Toyotas and Chevrolets, but found the Tesla the best option. She said she was optimistic the cars would enter service “around July.”


3 responses to “Norwalk, pivoting to EVs, will add 4 Teslas to City vehicle fleet”

  1. Thomas Belmont

    Very costly fashion statement. Not a practical investment to a city function with no Real study of financial benefit. Government should be the LAST to invest in this technology that involves such high cost with only long range calculated possible TAXPAYER savings and returns, and without their unanimous consent.

  2. John O’Neill

    Not sure if those quoted above are looking at the same economics books as us. Also, not sure if they’re looking at the same
    car reviews as most. Lastly, I’d also question the carbon footprint of their homes.

  3. Bryan Meek

    Pay no attention to those escalated tax bills coming in the mail in the next few days. We are rolling in it.

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