China’s BYD is the Vineyard Transit Authority’s (VTA) answer to soot emitting diesel buses on the island of Martha’s Vineyard off the coast of Massachusetts.
VTA is putting BYD battery-electric buses on the island’s routes right in time for the heart of tourist season.
BYD has delivered five buses and a sixth will be in service by the end of July.
The six-bus order includes four BYD K9S 35-foot models and two K7 30-foot models.
VTA’s plan to convert its entire fleet to pure electric. The VTA has announced it will purchase an additional four BYD buses.
“We are excited to begin transforming our fleet with these six BYD electric buses,” said Angie Grant, Administrator of Vineyard Transit Authority. “VTA is the first transit agency in Massachusetts to commit to going all-electric. This delivery is a milestone for both VTA and our state to begin the shift of electrification.”
According to VTA, it selected BYD for irs first set of electric buses based on BYD’s battery warranty, mile range and selection of sizes and models, which accommodate Martha’s Vineyard’s road network.
“We are thrilled to partner with VTA in helping to create a more sustainable world. Many agencies look to VTA for its industry-leading practices and consciousness. They service an area that is in high demand year after year and they set the bar for forward thinking,” stated Bobby Hill, senior vice president of BYD.
The proprietary BYD Iron-Phosphate batteries that power the K7 and K9S are manufactured in Lancaster, California.
The company’s revolutionary battery is nontoxic, 100% recyclable, fire-safe and incredibly long-cycled. BYD is the first and only electric bus manufacturer in the world to offer a 12-year warranty on its batteries.
The K7 electric bus has a capacity of 22 passengers, while the K9S features a capacity of up to 32 passengers, depending on the precise configuration. The new buses will produce no emissions, make oil changes a thing of the past and offer dramatically lower maintenance costs.
BYD and Berkshire Hathaway
In 2008, Berkshire Hathaway bet on BYD’s potential, purchasing 225 million shares. It’s an investment that has paid off handsomely. Berkshire’s original investment of $230 million has grown in value almost ten-fold, and is now worth roughly $1.96 billion.
For More on BYD, read the Special Report: BYD, Berkshire’s Tesla.
© 2018 David Mazor
Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathaway, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell the stock. The information contained in this article should not be construed as personalized or individualized investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.