The record for “largest order of electric buses in Europe” is proving to be a rapidly moving target. In November, Volvo sold 157 e-buses to a French public transit operator, and proclaimed that this order was the largest in Europe to date. Now Keolis, a private public transport operator that manages bus and metro systems around the world, has ordered 259 buses from BYD.
The new e-buses will serve the Netherlands’ IJssel-Vecht region, including the cities of Zwolle, Apeldoorn and Lelystad. Deliveries will begin next summer, and will take place in phases to allow the transit operator to gradually integrate them into the existing fleet.
Keolis Nederland’s order includes BYD’s 8.7-meter, 12-meter, and new 13-meter electric buses. All will be equipped with pantograph charging connectors, which enable automated fast charging en route or at depots.
BYD has delivered over 1,200 electric buses in 10 countries and 60 cities (including Charged’s home town of St Petersburg, Florida).
“It is another milestone for Keolis Nederland and the Keolis Group in developing and deploying electromobility solutions around the world, and it reaffirms our commitment to supporting public transport authorities in the transition to sustainability,” Keolis Nederland CEO Frank Janssen told CleanTechnica. “We’ve chosen BYD due to our excellent experience with their e-buses. Furthermore, we trust in BYD’s expertise as a manufacturer in developing and maintaining battery packages.”
“We have worked tirelessly with Keolis to provide a complete transport solution,” said BYD Europe Managing Director Isbrand Ho. “Delivery programmes on this scale can only be achieved through excellent cooperation and by striking up a long-term partnership.”