Taiwan may be small in the grand scheme of things - the island off of China's southeastern coast is slightly larger than Maryland - but it's a big deal for BYD and sales of that automaker's e6 electric vehicle. BYD Taiwan, a partnership between BYD Hong Kong and Taiwan Solar Energy Co., has reached an agreement in which 1,500 of the EVs will be ordered for that country's taxi service, Focus Taiwan reports. Deliveries will start early next year for the e6 electric crossover, which seats five. The cars have a single-charge range of 186 miles.

BYD's investors include Warren Buffett and the company has been increasing e6 sales in recent years largely via taxi agreements. In 2010, the company deployed 40 e6 taxis in its hometown of Shenzhen. Last year, BYD deployed what was said to be South America's largest all-electric taxi fleet with 45 e6 taxis put into service in Bogota, Columbia. Singapore and London are among other cities that have reached agreements to have BYD supply some of their all-electric taxis. As of last fall, about 800 e6 EVs had been deployed as taxis worldwide, so the 1,500-unit Taiwanese contract is a substantial one both for BYD and the e6 EV.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 7 Comments
      Marco Polo
      • 1 Year Ago
      The Republic of China (Taiwan ) may be only the size of Maryland, but it has five times Maryland's population. With over 24 % of the nation reserved for national parks, the people of Taiwan have always been very environmentally conscious and local EV production is becoming well established. Taiwan's taxi fleet is very anxious to continually improve it's service and image. Like Singapore the government has encouraged high standards among Taxi's, including over 12,000 English speaking drivers. Taiwan 's taxi fleet already contains a high percentage of Hybrid vehicles. Most of these BYD EV taxi's will be restricted to the capital of Taipei .
        Technoir
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Marco Polo
        It is fantastic news indeed, however.... Taiwan's emission laws are not really strict. Their cities are full of 2-stroke scooters, and you see 15+ year old cars all the time. I certainly hope that more cities will buy EV taxis....Hong Kong has a couple BYD taxis, but I was never able to ride in one so far.
          Marcopolo
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Technoir
          @ Technoir The ROC has the best emission laws in Asia, but you are correct, ironically it still has a lot of old 2 stroke scooters, and people hang on to old cars, many of which have very low mileages.
          Technoir
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Technoir
          Marco Polo Ok noted, did not know that. Across Asia, my impression is that even if there are laws in place, the enforcement is extremely shoddy. In Hong Kong for example, it was recently reported that the 15,000+ taxis were hardly maintained since their introduction nearly 15 years ago. That means broken, corroded catalytic converters, exhaust filtering etc.. because inspections were a joke and nobody cared, paid for, or did their job correctly. It is one of many examples in Asia. People live in buildings that would be evacuated for posing health and fire hazards in the west. I could go on for hours.
      • 1 Year Ago
      Those taxis shown are from Hong Kong, not Taiwan though....
      RC
      • 1 Year Ago
      This is what NYC should have done for their Taxi of Tomorrow.
      DaveMart
      • 1 Year Ago
      The BYD makes a far more practical taxi than the Leaf. Their lithium iron phosphate battery chemistry although a bit heavier than Nissan's manganese spinel is tough and can handle frequent fast charging, and apparently does fine in the heat as they have been using it in Hong Kong for some time and that gets pretty sweaty in the summer. They have put in a biggish battery, and the guys with opportunity charging are regularly travelling 3-400 miles a day in these: http://www.evworld.com/news.cfm?newsid=31467 When inductive charging in taxi ranks is introduced, which seems inevitable, that is urban taxis pretty well sorted, and they produce a very large proportion of emissions in cities.