1. Are battery-electric trucks dangerous?

Chaoran Fang

BYD Motors Manager, Project Management

BYD’s electric trucks are powered by Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4) batteries, which are proven to be the safest in the industry. They are far less vulnerable to fire risk than an internal combustion engine. BYD batteries undergo the most rigorous safety tests including fire, pressure, and puncture, none of which present fire risks. With over 14,000 electric trucks deployed globally, BYD has validated designs to maximize safety.

2. Can battery-electric trucks handle the duty cycles?

In some scenarios like long-haul, battery-powered trucks are restricted by their range and payload. Most regional haul activities and yard operations are within the range of BYD’s current options. We continue to extend range and increase payload as battery technologies improve. Current BYD Class 8 Yard tractors are able to handle up to 15 hours of heavy-duty operations on a single charge and capable of three shift rotations with opportunity charging.

3. How long does charging take?

BYD trucks can charge up to 225kW, allowing for a full charge in 2~3 hours. Charging speed should be strategized based on fleet’s operations and facility power constraints. BYD leverages the industry standard CCS1 DC charging configuration to make our trucks compatible with all major charger brands.

BYD is also working with leading Charging Management Partners on planned charging and queued charging.

4. How much maintenance do electric trucks require?

Electric vehicles have far fewer moving parts, reducing preventative maintenance requirements more than 50%. Primary activities are topping up and changing fluids. Refuse bodies and suspension require the same maintenance that would be included on an ICE vehicle.

5. How much do electric trucks cost?

Electric vehicles currently come with a price premium, requiring roughly 3x of the upfront capital compared with similar ICE vehicles. Many states offer incentives for both the vehicles and charging infrastructure, bringing this to parity. The economics become attractive when looking at the Total Cost of Ownership as fuel costs are maintenance costs are significantly reduced. A variety of companies are emerging to offer Transportation as a Service allowing fleets to deploy electric trucks as an operational cost that’s similar to the cost of operating an ICE vehicle. Bi-directional charging also presents an opportunity for these trucks to provide more revenue streams beyond their normal duty cycle while they’re sitting idle.