Managing the Financial Side of Commercial Fleets

El Pollo Loco Rolls Out ZAP Electric Vehicles for Local Deliveries

July 11, 2008

COSTA MESA, CA – El Pollo Loco is rolling out two electric delivery vehicles from ZAP, according to The company now operates a pair of three-wheel, sub-compact electric cars covered in bumper-to-bumper brand messaging and emblazoned with scorching red flames against a purple background.

With more than 400 fast casual restaurants, El Pollo Loco was searching for a delivery vehicle that would act as a moving billboard for the restaurant's new delivery and catering restaurant in the Beverly Hills and Century City areas, as well as contribute to the company's environmental stewardship efforts.

El Pollo Loco purchased the Xebra electric vehicles from Santa-Rosa-based ZAP, a company that offers a full line of electric and advanced technology vehicles. With a top speed of 40 miles per hour, the Xebra is 10 feet long, 5 feet wide, and slightly more than 5 feet high, with a carrying capacity of 1,000 pounds. It plugs into a 110-volt outlet for a full charge in up to six hours and a 50 percent charge in up to 1.5 hours. It comes in either a four-door sedan or a pickup. The average range on a single charge is up to 25 miles.

The cost to run a Xebra, which retails for about $12,000, is about three cents a mile, compared to 13.3 cents a mile for a gas vehicle that gets 30 miles per gallon at $4 a gallon. Maintenance costs are one-third that of gas vehicles due to the reduction of moving parts, less wear, and replacements.

ZAP says the demand for its electric vehicles has skyrocketed with record gas prices. In April, ZAP reported it had delivered more than 700 units in the United States, and in May they reported a $6.8 million backlog for the Xebra, more than the company's sales for all of last year. ZAP officials said orders have even surpassed their own projections, according to Most of the demand initially has been from consumers, but recent gas prices are causing many corporate and government fleet buyers to start exploring the use of electric vehicles.


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