Energy offers $55M for efficient vehicle technology

The Energy Department is offering more than $55 million to companies, universities and laboratories to develop and deploy fuel efficiency vehicle technology.

The grants are meant to increase the efficiency of the country’s vehicle fleet, reducing petroleum use and help attain the Obama administration’s goal of making electric vehicles’ pricing on par with traditional vehicles by 2022.

Energy Secretary Ernest MonizErnest Jeffrey MonizOvernight Energy: Pruitt defends first-class travel | Watchdog says contractor charged Energy Department for spas, lobbying | Experts see eased EPA enforcement under Trump Obama energy secretary named to utility giant’s board Give Trump new nukes and we are that much closer to war MORE announced the funding Thursday at the Washington Auto Show.

“Energy Department investments in advanced vehicle technologies have had a major impact on the industry, driving down costs for consumers and reducing carbon emissions,” Moniz said in a statement.

“These projects will continue America’s leadership in building safe, reliable, and efficient vehicles to support a strong, 21st century transportation system.”

The grants will go to research, development and deployment projects. The Energy Department wants to match funds that the company, university or laboratory will put toward projects.

Among the projects that the department wants to fund are those that seek to improve battery technology, lightweight materials, advanced engine combustion and natural gas technology.

The department also said that it will announced $35 million next month to be available for fuel cell technologies, including hydrogen fuel cells.