BYD sees sharp growth in global or­ders

China Daily - - BUSINESS - By CHAI HUA in Shen­zhen grace@chi­nadai­lyhk.com

China’s lead­ing elec­tric ve­hi­cle maker BYD on Mon­day signed a con­tract for 200 elec­tric trucks with a Brazil­ian firm, mark­ing the com­pany’s largest or­der for e-trucks in the in­ter­na­tional mar­ket.

The e-truck’s gross weight with full load is around 21 met­ric tons and needs three hours to charge to full ca­pac­ity, which can power the ve­hi­cle to op­er­ate over 100 kilo­me­ters. All of the trucks are ex­pected to be de­liv­ered be­fore 2023.

It is the com­pany’s sec­ond large-scale deal for heavy-duty trucks in less than one month. Ear­lier this month, BYD sold 500 elec­tric dump trucks — its largest sales or­der of its kind. These dump trucks can run for 280 kilo­me­ters when fully loaded.

“BYD has en­tered the stage of the com­mer­cial ap­pli­ca­tion of e-trucks and it can also drive its bat­tery busi­ness, which is ex­pected to be in­de­pen­dent soon,” said Hu Feng, an elec­tric ve­hi­cle an­a­lyst at Shen­zhen Gao­gong In­dus­try Re­search Cen­ter.

He said the heavy-duty freight ve­hi­cle sec­tor could be­come a new and im­por­tant cat­e­gory for BYD, af­ter buses, which are its “busi­ness card,” and step for­ward to re­al­ize its “di­ver­si­fi­ca­tion strat­egy.”

But the sub­sidy cut for e-buses dragged down its net profit in the first quar­ter by 83 per­cent year-on-year.

Mean­while, the bus mar­ket is ap­proach­ing sat­u­ra­tion point. For in­stance, all buses in Shen­zhen have been trans­formed to be elec­tric-pow­ered since the end of last year, while most of its dump trucks are still tra­di­tional ones so far and the city plans to grad­u­ally up­grade them to elec­tric ones since the be­gin­ning of this month.

More­over, con­sul­tancy Frost & Sul­li­van wrote in a re­port that the Chi­nese elec­tric truck mar­ket will be the global elec­tric medium heavy-duty truck leader, and is ex­pected to be dom­i­nated by fully elec­tric trucks with a 61.1 per­cent mar­ket share.

Wang Liusheng, chief an­a­lyst for the au­to­mo­bile in­dus­try at CSM Se­cu­ri­ties, said: “Sales of e-trucks could bring an ad­di­tional in­come to BYD’s cur­rent busi­ness, but if they want to ex­pand the mar­ket, bat­tery en­ergy den­sity and en­durance abil­ity need to be fur­ther im­proved.”

He said that the big­gest two ob­sta­cles to the devel­op­ment of the e-truck mar­ket are bat­tery life and cost. Un­like pas­sen­ger ve­hi­cles, trucks are loaded with cargo so this re­quires a longer bat­tery life.

BLOOMBERG

An em­ployee in­stalls brake pads on a BYD ve­hi­cle at the firm’s as­sem­bly plant in Shen­zhen, Guang­dong province.

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