BYD announced further expansion of its already comprehensive electric bus portfolio by battery-electric Type D school buses in North America.
The new model looks quite attractive and according to the manufacturer is also very well equipped in terms of safety, comfort and technology. It's envisioned for transporting students to classes, field trips, as well as athletic and band events.
There will be three length versions - 35, 38, and 40 feet (10.7, 11.6 and 12.2 m) with up to 84 seats, an optional ADA liftgate and a range of up to 155 miles on a single charge.
As usual for BYD, the bus is equipped with BYD's in-house lithium iron phosphate batteries (LFP) and high-speed, dual in-wheel traction motors.
According to BYD, there will be a bi-directional charging option, which allows the implementation of V2G.
Stella Li, President of BYD North America said:
“We are raising the bar for design, innovation, range and quality, giving parents peace of mind knowing their children are benefitting from the safest school bus anywhere. At the same time, our buses will give operators the performance and cost savings that will make migrating to zero emission technology affordable and practical.”
The energy costs of BYD's electric school buses are expected to be up to 60% lower than fuel costs for diesel counterparts. Also, the maintenance costs will be cut by as much as 60%.
BYD said that a lot of attention was put into the safety of the vehicle, which includes such features as:
- electronic stability control to aid handling
- a collision-avoidance system
- a 360-degree monitoring system to detect pedestrians and cyclists when the bus is operating at slow speeds
- Predictive Stop Arm - an additional layer of protection for children as they exit the bus - which monitors approaching traffic and notifies students when it may not be safe to cross
- options include: IMMI’S Safeguard 3-point lap-shoulder belts, integrated child seats, and portable restraints
To enhance driver's comfort, BYD took care of ergonomics in designing the driver’s cockpit:
"The driver’s area features comfort seats, an 18-inch power steering wheel and telescopic steering column, high level of visibility, and easy to reach control switches. The driver can also control the air conditioning over the cockpit in addition to controlling the system for passengers."