BYD: The 35-foot model set a new benchmark and record for the entire American electric bus industry.

BYD announced earlier this month that its 35-foot K8M all-electric bus model, manufactured in California, has set a high scoring record in the Federal Transit Administration Model Bus Testing Program in Altoona, Pa.

The Chinese manufacturer notes: "record-setting performance included high marks in structural durability, reliability, maintainability, and safety".

We checked the FTA report (pdf) and it turns out that the vehicle has passed the Altoona test and received an aggregate score of 88.0 points, in service-life category of 12-years and 500,000 miles (800,000 km).

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For comparison, the articulated K11M model received 83.3 points a year ago, which also was considered a good score. One of the most recent Proterra models (report from September 2020) received 79.9 points (see the FTA report here).

The K8M model has a length of 35-foot and is equipped with an LFP battery pack (up to 435 kWh). Multiple transit agencies already use those buses in revenue service in North America.

Patrick Duan, BYD North America Senior Vice President said:

“We set a new benchmark and record for the entire American electric bus industry. The Altoona test results prove the K8M will give our customers the best reliability and lowest maintenance costs they deserve and demand. I’m very proud of our team, and I’m extremely happy that our customers will benefit when they deploy the top bus in its class.”

BYD produces in California low-floor electric transit buses of various types, from 30-foot K7M, through 35-foot K8M, 40-foot K9M, to 60-foot articulated K11M. More than 70% of the content comes from the U.S. according to BYD.

The offer includes also motor coaches and 45-foot double-decker C10MS model.

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