NZ Bus to begin trial of BYD electric bus in Auckland and Wellington

February 3, 2017

Press Release – 2 February 2017

NZ Bus to begin trial of BYD electric bus in Auckland and Wellington

NZ Bus will this week begin trialling its new BYD eBus in Auckland and then in Wellington, as another part of its strategy to lead the transition to electric-powered public transport in New Zealand.

NZ Bus Chief Executive Officer, Zane Fulljames, said that the trial will enable NZ Bus to assess whether this fully electric bus, which is proven in other markets across the world, can meet the challenges of New Zealand’s unique topographical landscape and the specific requirements of bus networks in Auckland and Wellington. 

“As a business we are committed to leading the industry towards an electric-powered bus fleet, as was reflected in our announcement last year to invest NZ$43m in Wrightspeed electric powertrain technology to be retrofitted to buses in our existing fleet.

“Trialling BYD eBus technology is about looking at options for the future in terms of our ongoing fleet replacement programme,” said Mr Fulljames.

The makers of the eBus, BYD Company Limited, operate across 6 continents, 48 countries and regions, and 200 cities. They are the suppliers of the largest electric bus fleet in Europe and are in fleets across Canada, USA, Chile, China, Singapore and Australia. 

NZ Bus’ trial of its BYD eBus is expected to last up to three months. The BYD eBus may not attract attention as it travels Auckland and Wellington bus routes, given that it looks much like a conventional diesel or diesel-hybrid bus, but people might notice that it is significantly quieter.

In parallel with the BYD eBus trial, NZ Bus is also well underway with the process of retrofitting Wrightspeed electric powertrains to its existing bus fleet at its workshop in Wellington.

“As a major transport operator, NZ Bus has the scale for investment of the kind these initiatives represent. We are committed to continuing to lead the industry and contribute to reducing New Zealand’s carbon footprint through innovation,” said Mr Fulljames.


About NZ Bus

NZ Bus is the largest operator of urban bus services in New Zealand. It has a fleet of over 1,000 buses, employs approximately 1,900 people and carries over 50 million passengers each year. It operates the Metrolink, LINK, North Star, Go West and Waka Pacific bus services in Auckland and the Go Wellington and Valley Flyer bus services in Wellington. NZ Bus is committed to the future of public transport in New Zealand, by making it more efficient, reliable and accessible for everyone. NZ Bus is 100% owned by Infratil.

About the BYD eBus

BYD Company Limited (BYD) is one of the Top 500 Chinese Enterprises, specialising in four industries including IT, automobile and new energy. Its shares are listed on both the Hong Kong Stock Exchange and Shenzhen Stock Exchange. Based in Shenzhen, China, BYD’s fleet in Shenzhen alone (780 electric buses) have accumulated more than 106 million kilometres, saving over 42 million litres in fuel or 112 million kg of CO2 relative to standard diesel buses. BYD operates across 6 continents, 48 countries and regions, and 200 cities, including the EU, Canada, USA, Chile, Singapore and Australia, and are the suppliers of the largest electric bus fleet in Europe.

About Wrightspeed Inc.

Wrightspeed Inc. is the leading manufacturer of range-extended electric vehicle powertrains. Built on a tradition of quality systems engineering, Wrightspeed's powertrains are the next step in the evolution of vehicle propulsion. Its flagship product, the Route™ was designed to transcend commercial truck efficiency and performance, providing unlimited range and dramatically reduced fuel costs. Located in Silicon Valley, Wrightspeed was founded by Ian Wright, co-founder of Tesla Motors. For more information about Wrightspeed visit: and follow us on Twitter at @GOWrightspeed.

For more information, please contact:

Charlotte Wright
Mobile: 027 457 0478


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