Short Circuit

Albuquerque to sue BYD over electric buses


Albuquerque mayor Tim Keller announced that the City is taking legal action against BYD bus company. BYD was contracted by the city to build 60-foot, fully electric buses for the troubled Rapid Transit project.

“The short story is we’re taking BYD to court,” Kelly said. The city forced BYD to remove the buses from the city last week over a number of safety and battery-life issues. Keller said the city reached out to BYD in an attempt to settle the conflict through mediation, but the mayor said BYD “didn’t even call us back.”

BYD said in an emailed statement that it is “considering all legal options in response to the City’s actions.” BYD again disputes the Mayor’s assertions regarding BYD and its products in the statement. “It is unfortunate that the City has chosen to file a lawsuit. Prior to today’s press conference, the City had refused to provide BYD with inspection reports documenting alleged problems with the buses. The City has never stated the amount of damages it claims to have suffered.”

We reported in November that the City had cancelled its electric bus order, which BYD claimed was for political reasons. But Keller insists that he’s generally a “big supporter” of electric vehicles and will consider electric city buses when the technology is more sound. Since the City has now ordered combustion models from a US maker, it may seem like he puts electric bus technology in question in general. The battle goes on.



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