Navistar’s new light-duty all-electric commercial truck – built with the help of a $39 million stimulus funding grant awarded last year by the Dept. of Energy (DOE) – returned to Capitol Hill this week as part of local “Earth Day” celebrations.

Navistar intends to build 400 of the trucks at its facility in Elkhart, IN, this year. The OEM said the expectation is it will produce several thousand of these units within a few years as the market grows.

“Earth Day is not just about one day; it’s about doing the best we can to create a cleaner world with efficient transportation options every day,” said Shane Terblanche, gm of the Navistar-Modec Electric Vehicle Alliance LLC. “This electric truck is proof that, working in collaboration with Congress and DOE, we can bring advanced technology to market today.”

Terblanche noted that this all-electric truck produces zero tailpipe emissions and can travel about 100 miles before requiring a recharge. He said it is intended primarily for commercial truck users operating in congested, urban environments where stop-and-go driving would otherwise consume a large amount of fuel. To date, the prototype has been successfully tested for 200,000 miles.

“Our continued support for the research and development of groundbreaking technologies, such as this all-electric vehicle, is vital to creating jobs at home, reducing our dependence on foreign oil, and establishing America as the leader in clean vehicle technologies,” said Rep. Joe Donnelly (D-IN). “I am proud that companies in north central Indiana are putting cleaner, greener technologies to work on our roads today.”