Fetranspor and Rio Bus, the public transportation companies for the state and city of Rio, and BYD, a Chinese company with advanced technologies on batteries and electric vehicles, joined together at the opening ceremonies for the launch of the BYD 100% electric bus this week. This is the first pure-electric bus to launch in Rio and is running now on line 249 (Water-Santa Carioca) operated by Matias, the leader of the Consortium Internorte.
The partnership, which aims to test the bus on a regular line for one month, has the support from the City Government through the City Department of Transportation, and the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group (a network of megacities committed to taking actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions) and is currently chaired by Mayor of Rio de Janeiro Eduardo Paes.
Rio is one of the three cities in Brazil to test the 100% electric buses from BYD (São Paulo and Salvador have done successful tests already). The Operation Manager for Mobility at Fetranspor, Guilherme Wilson said that, “the electric buses are no longer just a promise; the electrical technology is a major innovation in the urban mobility sector. In addition, this vehicle has zero emissions, superior durability and lower operating costs, all considerable advantages towards sustainability.”
Companies in Rio have tested some types of buses before, like hybrids, diesel from sugar cane, biodiesel, also CNG buses. The pioneering favored this new partnership. "Fetranspor is a great reference for testing new energy buses in public transportation and the segment in Rio de Janeiro is a model for many cities in the country,” said Vagner Rigon, Sales Vice President of BYD do Brasil. “The partnership with Fetranspor will be important to showcase its economical and environmental benefits and help to develop the market for low carbon buses.”
Besides Brazil, the 100% electric bus has been tested since 2011 in several cities around the world. BYD is testing the buses under different traffic and road conditions, terrain, elevations and temperatures to improve bus design.