BYD set to provide Hungary with 48 electric buses

BYD has received an order for 48 electric buses from Hungary’s largest public transport company Volánbusz. The 12-metre-long BYD electric buses will be delivered to Volánbusz later this year and used in five Hungarian cities.

++ This article has been updated; please continue reading below. ++

According to BYD, this order represents the Hungarian PTO’s largest electric bus order from BYD to date. Volánbusz will deploy the zero-emission buses in the Hungarian cities of Győr, Zalaegerszeg, Szolnok, Szeged and Eger.

The electric buses are equipped with BYD’s Iron-Phosphate Battery technology. The 343kWh battery capacity enables a range of 300 kilometres on a single charge. BYD says the new electric buses will also sport its Battery Thermal Management System, which they say has proven reliability in extreme weather conditions.

This claim does not come from anywhere. The 12-metre buses on order are the company’s most popular model in Europe, with over 1000 units operating from Norway to Spain and many countries in between.

This might be BYD’s most significant electric bus order in Hungary so far. Still, it isn’t the bus maker’s first: Volánbusz Zrt already owns two 12-metre buses, one of which was delivered to the Municipality of Salgótarján in 2018 and the other to the city of Komárom in 2021. The latter was introduced for cross-border bus services across the Danube River to neighbouring Komárno in Slovakia. In addition, BYD says there are currently over 70 pure-electric buses in service or on order in ten cities in Hungary, including Salgótarján, Tatabanya, Komárom, Pecs and Miskolc.

The Chinese bus-maker has a home-grown advantage in Hungary: the electric buses will be built locally since BYD’s European manufacturing facility, called BYD Electric Bus & Truck Hungary Kft, is located in Komárom.

On announcing the order, László Palkovics, Hungarian Minister of Innovation and Technology, said: “The Government continuously acts towards green public transport according to its ‘Climate and Environmental Protection Action Plan’. Hungary became a regional leader in the sector’s renewable energy rate during the past decade, reaching a sixth position in Europe and gaining the best result in Central Europe in this field.” He explained that “The Government launched the ‘Green Bus Program’ for the quality upgrade of local bus fleets in rural cities with a budget of 36 billion HUF,” revealing that the initiative is now to be expanded to settlements with a population under 25 000, meaning that new tenders for purchasing another 350 electric buses will be announced soon.

Update 15 June 2023

A little over a year after placing the above order, BYD delivered eleven buses to the town of Zalaegerszeg in western Hungary. Its 55,000 inhabitants may now board the new buses on almost all bus lines in Zalaegerszeg.

Mobility Volánbusz provided the charging infrastructure to recharge the 343kWh batteries that offer a range of 300 kilometres on a single charge taking 2-2.5 hours per day, according to BYD.

Javier Contijoch, eBus Sales President at BYD Europe, said Zalaegerszeg joined “the list of communities that can gain knowledge about and use electromobility and our company’s market-leading electric bus in everyday traffic”.

The electric buses in Zalaegerszeg are equipped with air conditioning, wheelchair accessibility, electronic passenger information systems, and onboard cameras., (update June ’23, Zalaegerszeg)


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