Ford Names Lightning Hybrids as one of first Advanced Fuel Qualified Vehicle Modifiers

New Ford quality program recognizes alternative-power options, like Lightning Hybrids Energy Recovery System, that save fuel and reduce emissions

Indianapolis, March 14, 2017 – Lightning Hybrids, designer and manufacturer of the hydraulic hybrid Energy Recovery System (ERS) for medium- and heavy-duty fleet vehicles, has been named as an Advanced Fuel Qualified Vehicle Modifier (QVM) by Ford Motor Company.

Lightning Hybrids is one of three initial vehicle modifiers, and the only hydraulic hybrid manufacturer, in the new eQVM program. The program, unveiled at The Work Truck Show, helps fleet and commercial customers meet their unique and specific needs for durable, reliable hybrid work trucks that retain the original powertrain warranty.

“For commercial and government fleets working to save fuel and substantially reduce emissions, our ERS technology is a compelling option for all of Ford’s medium and heavy duty platforms, backed by the peace of mind offered by Ford’s eQVM program,” said Tim Reeser, CEO of Lightning Hybrids. “Our system reduces NOx emissions by half and CO2 emissions by 25 percent compared to vehicles without it, and fleets see a quick return on investment.”

ERS installed in a Ford E450 chassis
ERS installed in a Ford E450 chassis

Lightning Hybrids offers the ERS for the Ford E-350 and E-450 chassis, F-350 to F-550 Super Duty trucks, F-650 and F-750 medium-duty trucks and F-59 chassis. Attendees at The Work Truck Show in Indianapolis this week can see a Ford E-350 box truck equipped with Lightning Hybrids’ hydraulic hybrid ERS at its booth (5475).

The system from Lightning Hybrids is a patented, parallel hydraulic hybrid system with no electric batteries. Instead, it applies a hydraulic system to the vehicle driveline to regenerate braking energy. Hydraulic pumps and a lightweight accumulator brake the vehicle, store the braking energy, and then use that stored energy to provide power to the wheels. In doing so, fuel is saved, and harmful emissions are reduced.

The ERS can be installed on new vehicles, as well as retrofitted on vehicles already in service. It is sold through a network of dealers and upfitters.

Ford’s eQVM program builds on the success of its Advanced Fuel QVM program launched in 2010. The eQVM program expands available alternative-power options to include hydraulic hybrid systems and electrification.

QVM is Ford’s quality recognition given to aftermarket adaptive equipment installers that meet manufacturing guidelines and best practices. Ford’s thorough QVM qualification process includes on-site assessments at each location to verify the operation meets manufacturing, assembly, workmanship, customer service and quality requirements and that it has processes in place to produce vehicles that meet federal regulations. Vehicles modified by a Ford QVM in compliance with Ford guidelines retain their factory warranties.

Lightning Hybrids is a growing green-vehicle company that is expanding its portfolio of customers. Last fall, United Parcel Service placed 50 of Lightning Hybrids’ units in its Chicago fleet. Kiessling Transit, a Massachusetts-based paratransit bus company, recently doubled the size of its hydraulic hybrid green fleet to 70 vehicles. The U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, Colo. and Denali National Park in Alaska also operate vehicles with Lightning Hybrids system. In addition, the company recently expanded its offices in the United Kingdom to service customers in Europe.

About Lightning Hybrids

Lightning Hybrids designs and manufactures the hydraulic hybrid ERS (Energy Recovery System) for medium- and heavy-duty fleet vehicles. The innovative system improves fuel efficiency by regenerating braking energy, delivers safer braking and more power for acceleration, and decreases harmful greenhouse gas emissions. The ERS does not have any batteries, instead safely and efficiently storing energy mechanically in composite hydraulic accumulators, which are a fraction of the cost and weight of batteries. The hydraulic hybrid system can be installed on new vehicles as well as retrofitted on vehicles already in service and is distributed and installed by certified partners around the world. To learn more, go to

See Ford’s press release regarding QVM.