LA Adds 130 Electric Buses

By Mike Osenga14 November 2019

China’s BYD said that the Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT) has ordered 130 of its battery-electric model K7M buses, the largest single order of BYD’s battery-electric buses to date in the United States.

The 30-ft. K7M bus has a 195 in. wheelbase and seats 22 passengers. The power is produced by BYD’s iron-phosphate batteries which power a.c. synchronous motors delivering a maximum power of 90 kW x2 and a maximum torque of 550 Nm x2. The power system drives a ZF front axle and a BYD in-wheel drive rear axle. There are regenerative Knorr ABS brakes front and rear. BYD has a 12-year warranty on its batteries

Range is listed as up to 137 miles. Battery capacity is 180 kWh with a charging capacity of 80 kW. Charging times are three to four hours. Top speed is listed at 56 mph.

The project is part of the City of Los Angeles’ Green New Deal, a set of sustainability goals that includes converting the entire LADOT fleet to zero-emission buses by 2030. The City of Los Angeles has set a bold goal of converting every city vehicle to zero-emission technology by 2050.

The buses will be built at BYD’s coach and bus factory in Lancaster, Calif. BYD said its zero-emission buses exceed the Federal Transit Administration Buy America requirements, incorporating more than 70% U.S. content.

LADOT has been working with BYD since 2014 when it conducted a 90-day trial of a battery-electric bus. In January 2017, city officials introduced the first of four K9S battery-electric buses acquired by the LADOT with a grant from the California Energy Commission.

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