A fleet of fully electric buses in Argentina was brought across the Chilean border and to its final destination in the City of Mendoza by BYD on May 23rd after making the lengthy trek to get into the country by freighter. The 12 new BYD K9 buses will be the first fleet of electric buses in Argentina when local bus operator STM puts them into operation later this year. They will go into operation after undergoing a multipoint delivery inspection which is standard procedure for fleets upon taking receipt of new vehicles.
STM was assisted in the project by Argentinian bus company Andesmar and the manufacturer of the electric buses, BYD. The new K9s are being brought into the fleet to improve the cost of operation of the bus fleet, to reduce tailpipe emissions, and to reduce the noise pollution generated by the fleet of loud city buses they are replacing.
In addition to improving the quality of life for all city residents, the new BYD K9 buses also bring with them a host of new technologies for passengers. Instead of highly flammable gasoline or diesel, the new BYD buses will get their power from an array of non-toxic, fireproof BYD lithium iron phosphate (LiFePo) batteries.
Traditional lithium-ion batteries, like those used in most electric vehicles, use a chemistry that uses toxic cobalt, which has the potential to cause harm to humans when it is being extracted from the ground and in the event of a fire. LiFePo batteries are also thermally stable, so they are not prone to thermal runaway, the phenomenon that has caused fires in a handful of battery packs. It’s worth noting that event the cobalt-based lithium-ion battery chemistries are far less likely to catch on fire than petrol-based vehicles.
BYD continues to gain new footholds with customers around the world and now has its buses, taxis, and other plug-in vehicles in operation in more than 300 cities, 50 countries, across six continents. Apparently Antarctica is still a tough market for EVs.
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