BYD Electric Buses: 13 Million Zero-Emissions Miles In USA

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BYD has been an electric bus leader for a decade or so. I rode on an electric BYD bus in Barcelona in 2013 and the head of Barcelona’s transit agency told me at the time that, based on their first few months with the bus, it was cost-competitive with conventional diesel buses on a lifetime cost of ownership basis. BYD has been delivering buses around the world in larger and larger volumes since then.

A new milestone for BYD is particularly uplifting. BYD electric buses sold to customers in the United States have travelled more than 13 million miles — all emission-free.

BYD is a Chinese company, but it has an electric bus factory in California, which CleanTechnica visited a few years ago. The company notes that it is “proudly Buy America compliant.”

These BYD electric buses have eliminated the need to burn 3.3 million gallons of diesel fuel, and the combined estimates from transit agencies using the electric buses is that they have resulted in “millions of dollars in savings to US taxpayers.”

It is estimated that these electric buses have prevented 16,000 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions in the country. Explaining it in terms that we can maybe comprehend a little better, those 13+ million miles of transport in BYD electric buses are enough for more than 520 trips around the world, or enough of a reduction that it’s akin to removing 13,000 conventional gasoline cars from the road.

This is from the 50+ transit agencies that have bought BYD’s electric buses, “from Martha’s Vineyard and Indianapolis to Palo Alto and Los Angeles,” as BYD puts it.

Admittedly, not all customers are equal. In particular, there is one clear standout customer: Antelope Valley Transit Authority (AVTA). According to BYD, the transit agency operating in the county where BYD’s factory is located has put more than 3 million miles on its electric buses. “The AVTA estimates it has saved 769,231 gallons of diesel fuel, which equates to a savings of more than $1 million in fuel costs after paying for electricity.”

We have covered numerous BYD electric bus announcements, but we also miss some when too busy with other news. In July, for example, BYD announced an order for 15 electric buses in Norway as well as an order for a few in Frederick County, Maryland. A few days ago, BYD announced the order and delivery of 22 electric buses in Germany. A little more than a month ago, I wrote about Chile ordering 150 more electric buses from BYD (bringing the country’s total to 455) and a transit agency in Washington ordering 10 along with wireless fast charging.

“The official sponsor of mother nature,” as BYD calls itself, offers 10 different electric bus models in the US according to my count. BYD offers a 12 year warranty on its batteries, the longest in the industry.

Images courtesy BYD


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Zachary Shahan

Zach is tryin' to help society help itself one word at a time. He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director, chief editor, and CEO. Zach is recognized globally as an electric vehicle, solar energy, and energy storage expert. He has presented about cleantech at conferences in India, the UAE, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, Canada, and Curaçao. Zach has long-term investments in Tesla [TSLA], NIO [NIO], Xpeng [XPEV], Ford [F], ChargePoint [CHPT], Amazon [AMZN], Piedmont Lithium [PLL], Lithium Americas [LAC], Albemarle Corporation [ALB], Nouveau Monde Graphite [NMGRF], Talon Metals [TLOFF], Arclight Clean Transition Corp [ACTC], and Starbucks [SBUX]. But he does not offer (explicitly or implicitly) investment advice of any sort.

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