Azure Dynamics, a developer of hybrid electric components and powertrain systems, and Ford Motor Company have added New York Power Authority (NYPA), a public power organization, to the Lead customer program for the Ford Transit Connect Electric van.

Joining the Lead customer program will enable NYPA to receive one exclusive supply of Transit Connect Electric in late 2010 and facilitate the purchase of nine additional vans in 2011 by its government customers in Westchester County and New York City under its Electric Transportation Program.

In addition to joining the Lead customer program, NYPA is also working with Ford to help fleet customers learn more about the benefits of EVs and the electrified-vehicle options available to them to promote wider use of these vehicles for environmental benefits.

Ford Transit Connect featuring Azure’s Force Drive electric powertrain and a lithium-ion battery from Johnson Controls-Saft rechargeable through either a 240V or standard 120V outlet can achieve a range of up to 80 miles on a single charge and has a top speed of 75mph.

NYPA president and CEO Richard Kessel said that NYPA is a leader in helping to introduce electric and hybrid-electric vehicles in the New York Metropolitan Area and other parts of the state.

“These electric-drive vehicles are essential to improving energy efficiency, energy security and air quality and for growing jobs for the economy,” Kessel said.