South Africa’s first active electric bus launched in Cape Town

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A Golden Arrow electric bus is seen in Cape Town South Africa. The service is deploying the country's first fully electric public transport vehicles. (Photo source: Golden Arrow Bus Services)
A Golden Arrow electric bus is seen in Cape Town South Africa. The service is deploying the country’s first fully electric public transport vehicles. (Photo source: Golden Arrow Bus Services)

The first electric bus in active service in South Africa was officially launched here on Monday after having been in day-to-day operations carrying passengers in the city as of July.

Western Cape Province’s Transport and Public Works Minister Daylin Mitchell and a centuried major local bus operator Golden Arrow Bus Services jointly launched the bus that was manufactured by China’s energy vehicle manufacturer BYD.

The bus company has partnered with BYD and a co-funding partner, national electric vehicle program uYilo, to test two 100-percent electric buses for 12 months and sufficient testing has been done to take them into operation, it said in a joint statement with Mitchell.

The testing phase of the electric bus was rigorous, according to Golden Arrow.

Mitchell said in the statement the provincial transport department endorses innovation programs such as this one given the challenges experienced by commuters in the absence of the passenger rail system.

“After taking a ride in this bus, I am confident passengers will feel safe during their journey,” he said.

Golden Arrow Bus Services operates more than 1,000 peak-hour buses, transporting some 250,000 passengers daily.

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