TORRANCE, CA - Honda Motor Co. is dipping its toes into fueling stations by having compressed natural gas (CNG) pumps installed at some of its dealer locations, Bloomberg reports. Honda is currently the only automobile manufacturer that sells CNG-powered vehicles in the United States.
By taking away the concern some buyers have about finding fueling stations, the company hopes to increase sales of its CNG cars twofold. Honda is working with California regulators to have the pumps at two or more dealerships by the end of 2012. The state has the most CNG vehicles.
"If the dealer had a fueling station, it would really reduce some of that concern for the customer," said Steve Center, vice president for environmental business development in the United States. "It€™s not our place to create infrastructure, but it€™s a chicken-and-egg situation and we€™re going to have to nurse that egg along."
Right now, 270 Honda dealers in the United States will stock the Civic Natural Gas. Other automakers will be adding CNG models, including Chrysler Group and General Motor Co., both of which will debut trucks that can run on compressed natural gas. With gasoline prices continuing to creep closer to a $4 per gallon national average, CNG prices look very attractive, with an average cost of $2.13 as of January 2012.