The nation’s first domestically manufactured electric bus was shown to the public yesterday at a seminar organized by the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) on technologies that reduce carbon dioxide emissions from motor vehicles.
The bus is powered by a Li-ion battery that can be fully charged within an hour and can travel between 300km and 400km on each charge. The battery can be recharged up to 5,000 times and the bus can travel at a speed of up to 100kph.
EPA Minister Stephen Shen (沈世宏), reporters and several public bus operators were invited to ride the bus. The ride went smoothly and was extremely quiet.
Shen said the electric bus is sure to be in high demand, as the world is striving to conserve energy and reduce carbon emissions.
He said that bus developer PowerTech Auto Tech Corp (寶捷汽車) hoped to gain orders from overseas companies.
PowerTech chairman Raymond Tsai (蔡篤雄) said the bus is expected to pass safety tests this year and go into mass production next year. Each bus costs approximately NT$12 million (US$345,000), which is about twice as much as a diesel-powered bus.
Meanwhile, the Directorate General of Highways has proposed that highway bus operators be allowed to raise ticket prices by approximately 20 percent as operational costs have risen.