Chevy Volt’s UK cousin, the Vauxhall Ampera, will be used as a first response ambulance service vehicle in the UK’s York area.

As part of the commitment to reducing its carbon emissions, the Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust will be the first to trial a Vauxhall Ampera as part of its emergency fleet.

The ambulance service said that over the next few months the Ampera will operate as a rapid response vehicle in the York area to see how low carbon vehicles might be incorporated into the Trust’s fleet of more than 900 vehicles (emergency and Patient Transport Service).

Yorkshire Ambulance Service is committed to reducing its carbon footprint by 30% by 2015, as well as reducing its spending on fuel.

The Yorkshire Ambulance Service believes the E-REV technology in the Ampera makes it a good option as it benefits from both an electric motor and a petrol engine – so there isn’t any concern about range anxiety.

The Vauxhall Ampera is believed by the emergency service to be the first electric vehicle to be trialed by an ambulance service on a long-term basis. “We are very excited to be the first ambulance service to trial an electric vehicle that will respond to incidents, reduce our emissions and provide significant savings on fuel costs.  As it has both electric and petrol power we are confident that it is a viable alternative,” commented Richard Smith, Fleet Manager for Yorkshire Ambulance Service.

The City of York Council has agreed to support the trial by making plug-in electric charging points available across the city.