Berkshire Hathaway-backed BYD (Build Your Dreams) the world leader in electric vehicles, is introducing a battery-electric Type D school bus with unparalleled safety features and performance, wrapped in a sleek design that will have students wanting to step onboard.
With length options of 35, 38, and 40 feet, BYD’s Type D battery-electric school bus is perfect for transporting students to classes, field trips, as well as athletic and band events. The Type D can seat up to 84, and can be equipped with an ADA liftgate. The bus has a range of up to 155 miles on a single charge.
BYD’s smart technology creates a new environment where for bi-directional charging can be the norm. School buses can be charged overnight when energy demand is low, and clean emission free energy can be fed back into the classroom during school hours when the bus is parked keeping classrooms well-lit and students and teachers plugged-in.
“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,” said Stella Li, President of BYD North America. “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.”
BYD made safety the top priority in its school bus design, including such features as electronic stability control to aid handling, a collision avoidance system, and a 360-degree monitoring system to detect pedestrians and cyclists when the bus is operating at slow speeds.
In addition, BYD adds an additional layer of protection for children as they exit the bus with its Predictive Stop Arm™, which monitors approaching traffic and notifies students when it may not be safe to cross.
BYD buses can be equipped with IMMI’S Safeguard 3-point lap-shoulder belts, integrated child seats, and portable restraints. These school bus seats are not only designed to keep children safer, but they have the benefits of improving behavior, reducing bullying, and minimizing driver distraction.
“From the beginning, our team has always been focused on many key features,” said Samuel Kang, BYD’s Head of Total Technology Solutions. “We believed the Type D electric bus needed to be appealing to kids while at the same time offer the upmost safety features and driver ergonomics, be equipped with a safe, high-performance battery, and have plenty of storage capacity for road trips. The BYD Type D school bus achieves all those goals.”
With the driver being the first safety element, BYD drew from the experience of thousands of bus operators to enhance comfort and 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.
BYD and Berkshire Hathaway
In 2008, Berkshire Hathaway bet on BYD’s potential, purchasing 225 million shares for $232 million. It’s an investment that has paid off handsomely. Berkshire’s original investment of $232 million had grown in value to $5.897 billion as of December 31, 2020.
© 2021 David Mazor
Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathaway and BYD, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell a 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.