HYUNDAI TO PRODUCE ELECTRIC BUSES IN SERIES
South Korean vehicle manufacturer Hyundai Motor Company is going to start serial production of electric buses as it believes that markets for these buses are expanding very quickly. It is planning to finish developments by end of next year and release electric buses in South Korea and other countries in 2018 after going through tests.
Although this is not the first time Hyundai Motor Company is involved in producing electric buses, this time the company’s plans are more concrete. On the occasion of the ‘G20 Seoul Summit Conference’ which was held in 2011, Hyundai introduced its electric vehicle ‘BlueOn’ and four electric buses called ‘BlueCity’, which were produced as unique units, though series production was already envisaged at that moment. But these plans were postponed for reasons such as marketability.
However, Hyundai has decided to start new activities in this market as demands for electric buses are starting to increase due to enforced environment regulations.
Hyundai Motor Company’s electric bus will be a low-floor model equipped with two 51kWh lithium-ion batteries that use nickel, cobalt, and manganese as cathodic materials. Its batteries will be either of the normal plug-in type or exchangeable batteries. Besides, Hyundai Motor Company buses will also be suitable for using lithium ferric phosphate batteries. Since batteries with a capacity of 102kWh battery will be installed in the bus, its action radius will be more than 100km per charge, the company claims.
The Hyundai electric buses can be charged at 800V, saving a lot of charging time. The batteries will likely be supplied by LG Chemicals.
Although there are currently already some South Korean electric bus manufacturers such as Zyle Daewoo Bus, they do not have assembly lines that are solely meant for serial production.