BYD has introduced what they are calling the longest electric bus in the world. The K12A is 27 metres long, seats 250 passengers, has a top speed of 70 km/h and a range of 300 kilometres. The XXL bus was primarily developed for the South American market, for example for large cities such as Bogotá.
Colombia’s capital wants to replace the current extra-long buses with electric buses. The daily passenger flows on Bogotá’s BRT (Bus Rapid Transit) system have exceeded 2.8 million. The demand is clearly present. In addition, public transport must become cleaner.
The demand for such buses on foreign markets is enormous, says China Merchants Securities Chief Analyst for Automotive Wang Liusheng. For Chinese manufacturers, this is of great importance, as there are only a few international suppliers in the industry. Domestic sales of such buses have also collapsed after a strong start, as most major cities have already replaced their fleets of conventional buses with electric buses.
To date, BYD has delivered more than 50,000 pure electric buses worldwide. In particular, pure electric buses (longer than 10 meters) are the global leaders in total sales. However, only a few of them are in BRT systems. Stella Li, Senior Vice President of BYD, explains that BRT contracts generally run for 10 to 20 years. It is therefore difficult to obtain such contracts, but the situation will change soon, Li continued. Which is why BYD points out that the K12A is compatible with the global BRT system.