It Seems Some BYD Buses Have Quality Issues, Can’t Recharge

JUN 1 2018 BY MARK KANE 23

The City of Albuquerque, New Mexico notes a number of problems with electric buses supplied by the BYD for its Rapid Transit project.

As you can see in the media reports (videos below) from January and February, there were dozens of issues with the buses, including range (lower than anticipated) and charging (did not work properly).

Read Also – Plug-In Electric Bus Sales: Up 40% So Far In 2017

According to the KOAT article, Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller announced that the city is considering switching to another manufacturer to finally get the project up and running. There are issues with parts of the investment too.

“After taking office just six months ago, Mayor Keller received a disappointing briefing on ART, learning that the project was much farther behind than anyone anticipated—funding was not locked in, engineering challenges existed, stops weren’t finished, and bus operability was an open question.”

Here is the status on May 30:

Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller Provides Deep Dive Update on ART Project

“ABQRide has 15 buses onsite with varying levels of operability, and the company that was originally contracted by the City, Build Your Dreams (BYD), continues to address concerns raised previously about the quality of the buses. The buses still do not hold the charge that they were contracted to hold and that the system was designed for. The city is negotiating with BYD, and the company has agreed to install charging stations at each end of the ART bus lines to ensure buses can plug in between runs.

With these challenges in mind, the City will move forward working with a partial fleet of buses that could enable interim service later in the year while protecting tax payer dollars and long-term viability of transportation on Central.

In the coming months bus drivers will go through a 12-14 week training that will teach them to use the ART corridor and the bus platforms. While buses are on those training routes, the City will be working on the timing of the lights and driver education, so traffic patterns are as efficient as possible.”

Hopefully, the issues here are just a rare exception in BYD’s already-massive electric bus projects around the world.

Videos from January and February:

Source: KOAT

Categories: Bus, BYD


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23 Comments on "It Seems Some BYD Buses Have Quality Issues, Can’t Recharge"

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Wow! Issues with Chinese product? That is shocking. You get what you pay for. Too bad there isn’t a viable domestic EV bus option.

Yeah, Proterra… AKA GM ,and BMW

@koz hi…
The device from which you typed your super-smart, funny and not racist at all comment – where was it made? Just wondering…

Save your powder, Assaf, for real racists and racism. China is a country, not a race. Misusing the term for all manner of comments and actions you don’t like or agree with just diminishes it’s value when it is justified (e.g. describing Roseanne Barr’s recent tweet).

Perhaps you disagree with my characterization of poor quality products from China into the US market. Present your case to refute my comment rather than hurl an inaccurate insult. That is my experience and, frankly, has been an intentional market strategy on China’s part. They undercut existing markets with lower cost product. Often times there are other savings besides lower cost labor baked into the lower prices. This says nothing about the Chinese people, their character or even their ability to build quality products if that is the goal.

Before this tripe becomes somebody’s “truth”, Chinese is NOT a race.

I can see it coming, we will be prevented from criticizing cheap Chinese crap because that would be, well, you know…RACIST!!!

Proterra appears to cost a bit more upfront, but they build better quality buses. Here is hoping that articles like this push more US city planners to buy the better product, the American made Proterra. Maybe Proterra can start to sell in Europe and South America in the future, but the competition is stiff in the former and the market is small (due to initial price of the electric buses) in the latter.

Yes, you get what you pay for, but how many cities really have money and taxpayer will to pay even higher price for supposedly nicer and higher quality buses with bigger and more expensive batteries from Proterra or New Flyer or somebody else that are even less proven in practice.

There are cities with mild coastal climate with no hills, with shorter routes maybe, that are good candidates for early battery buses. But Albuquerque, New Mexico with temperatures exceeding 100 F in summer, or California hills (plus corruption as reported by LA Times) are more about building on hallucinations, not “dreams”.


Buyer beware! This is what you get for dealing with a Chinese company. It’s sad that there aren’t any American companies that can sell a quality electric bus at volume and can scale manufacturing to meet demand.

Haha, I rode on the BYD buses in Shenzhen, and can tell you they are on time, and seemed to be working well to me. I also rode on Proterra buses here in Seattle and they are more nicely built, but also expensive.

I think BYD is expanding too quickly, and has to work through these quality issues, as I believe they are really happening. Talking to a friend that works for King County Metro here in Seattle, he told me the quality difference was very apparent to him, and the BYD buses had many more problems in their test program, then the Proterra buses. I still invested in BYD, they will figure it out…

who told you Proterra is nicely built in what aspect, be more specific? I know a lots of US city choose BYD over Proterra because the later not meet requirments including range. I am from China, here to keep you American mind angry. stupid Trump advocates American First, but he will fail first, because he is stupid


“Hopefully, the issues here are just a rare exception in BYD’s already-massive electric bus projects around the world.”

Yeah, this seems to me like an outlier event. I don’t recall reading of similar problems with BEV city buses elsewhere, and BYD sells a lot of BEV buses. So it appears to me the problem is the way Albuquerque is implementing the bus line, not a problem with the way BYD builds BEV buses.

Los Angeles has had problems with BYD busses also, they had busses that wouldn’t go 59 miles on a charge, unable to go up hills, BYD bought back the first 5 delivered etc, this isn’t just a single city problem
Hopefully BYD Lancaster gets the quality up higher soon

@ Bunny:

Thanks for the info!

Chinese product not performing? Nooooooo.

I only trust LG, Samsung, and Panasonic. I wouldn’t buy a EV with Chinese battery.

Oh boy! You’re not going to like the future.

Yeah, and I wonder where the computer on which JrChevyVolt’s typed his comment, was produced 🙂
Btw, in the 1970s Americans were saying the same about Japanese products.

I wonder how many devices you have at home already with batteries from BYD…

BYD must provide service and engineering backup but even the article seems to indicate Driver Education is needed . . . I feel the latter seems appropriate once the former are gone over by Asian engineers and Technicians from the seller, BYD. Training of US technicians might help also!