Germany. Switzerland. Sweden. United Kingdom. What do all of these European nations have in common? They are places where electric bus trials have been going on. Now joining this growing list is Poland, where Chinese automaker BYD recently tested one of its all-electric ebus models on a busy route in Warsaw.
BYD said the ebus trial, working on route 222, ran through some of the main streets of Poland’s capital, such as Trakt Królewski. Built from the ground up as an electric bus and not one converted from a more conventional power unit, it was powered by an Iron-Phosphate battery, which the company noted as being important because it is reportedly safe and non-polluting, given that the materials contained in the battery can be recycled or safely disposed of.
The company said the price per 100 km (62 miles) for the BYD ebus is equal
to 50 zloty ($15), while the current combustion engines consume more than 40 l. of diesel fuel per 100 km, which costs at least 200 zł ($60)/ 100km. With a daily mileage of 250 km (155 miles), the bus provides saving of at least 395 zloty ($119) per day, and 10,665 zloty ($3,214) for 27 working days (one month). For that reason one bus may provide savings of at least 127,980 zloty ($38,568) annually.
Key features on the ebus designed to help keep costs down include appropriate weight distribution, system energy recovery to recharge the batteries while braking and a charging time of up to five hours after the batteries are completely depleted. BYD has much experience with its electric bus already in the field globally, since in its home nation of China for example, since 2011, “ 1,000 such buses have been built. In the city of Shenzhen, 200 BYD electric buses have together accumulated almost 17 million km in passenger carrying service.” This is on top of testing in many European cities.
Besides Poland, other places BYD buses have orders placed include the Netherlands, Finland, Denmark, Uruguay, Canada and the United States. The company is so bullish on its bus, in fact, that it recently announced plans to open a plant to manufacture them near Los Angeles.