XL Hybrids, Inc., developer of a hybrid electric powertrain designed for Class 1-3 commercial vehicles has signed an agreement with commercial-vehicle upfitter  Knapheide Manufacturing Co. for the installation and distribution of its products.

According to XL Hybrids, its powertrain is designed for seamless integration with OEM powertrains. XL Hybrids’ technology will be installed by Knapheide through its existing ship-through process, “thus providing a one-stop purchase, upfit, delivery and invoice experience for commercial fleets.”

 The companies’ partnership will launch nationwide delivery with the new 2014 Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana full-size vans starting August 1st. The hybrid powertrain is also available for installation on bailment-pool vehicles or as a retrofit for 2010 to 2013 GM cargo vans.

“We are excited to offer our fleet customers a work-ready hybrid electric vehicle upfitted with XL Hybrids’ fuel efficient hybrid powertrain technology because XL Hybrids’ product has been designed specifically for commercial fleets and the product offers a fast payback,” said Chris Weiss, vp president of engineering for Knapheide. “We look forward to working with XL Hybrids to market and deploy the hybrid product to our fleet customers looking for vehicle lifecycle cost-reduction from fuel and maintenance savings.”

“XL Hybrids has already successfully deployed our hybrid technology in the field with some of the largest fleets in North America and we look forward to additional success with Knapheide,” said Clay Siegert, XL Hybrids co-founder and vp of supply chain.

XL Hybrids designs, manufactures and installs hybrid electric powertrains for commercial vans and trucks. The company’s patent-pending hybrid electric powertrain can be installed on existing vehicles as a retrofit or as an upfit on new ones.

By storing energy wasted in braking and reapplying it during acceleration, XL Hybrids said its technology decreases fuel use and carbon dioxide emissions by up to 21.2 %  on urban routes while operating with the same durability and reliability as “traditional” vans and trucks.  XL Hybrids was founded by MIT alumni and is based in Boston.

The Knapheide family has owned and operated Knapheide Manufacturing since 1848. The company is as leading manufacturer and provider of commercial vehicle solutions. Knapheide’s main manufacturing facility, Westphalia, is located in Quincy, IL