Chinese e-car manufacturer BYD takes over first new building

The Chinese car manufacturer has put its first new car carrier into service for the transportation of its electric vehicles.

The “BYD Explorer No. 1 “, which can hold up to 7,000 cars, is the first ship designed and built in China to transport domestic electric vehicles abroad.[ds_preview]

BYD, the world’s largest electric car manufacturer, is already the industry leader in China, has been accelerating its international expansion overseas since 2020 and overtook Tesla in global electric vehicle sales last quarter. BYD has now announced that it is significantly lowering prices for electric vehicles in Germany in order to increase its market share. In Germany, the Chinese will have to compete with the domestic groups BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen (including Audi and Porsche).

The plans are likely to give a further boost to the transportation of cars. The car carrier market is currently experiencing a historic boom anyway, with a fully utilized fleet and high rates for shipping companies. Competitor Wallenius Wilhelmsen, for example, sees great demand for newbuildings.

The state-owned company China International Marine Containers (CIMC) announced on January 10 that the “BYD Explorer No. 1” built by CIMC Raffles for the international shipping company Zodiac Maritime had been handed over and had departed from the base in Longkou in the eastern Chinese province of Shandong.

Is BYD coming to BLG?

BYD has chartered the freighter and is the Chinese manufacturer’s first ship. The 199.9 m long, 38 m wide and up to 19 kn fast freighter was loaded in Shenzhen for its maiden voyage to Europe. There are no details yet about the ports of discharge. It is therefore currently unclear whether the ship will also call at the BLG Autoterminal, Germany’s largest transshipment point for new vehicles, on its maiden voyage. According to a spokeswoman, there is currently no concrete information on a possible call there.

The car carrier is equipped with two sets of C-shaped tanks for liquefied natural gas (LNG), which is used as the main fuel for the main engine and the generator, with a maximum range of around 15,800 nm.

The Shenzhen-based BYD Company, founded in February 1995 and now the largest car manufacturer in China with its subsidiary BYD Auto founded in 2003, is increasingly pushing into the European automotive market and is even planning to build a car production plant here. In October 2022, the dealer network for Germany was officially announced in order to offer regional sales and customer services. There are currently only two sales offices in northern Germany, one in Hamburg and one in Minden, and one is due to open in Oldenburg soon. The Chinese are also pushing ahead with their overseas expansion strategy in Sweden, the Netherlands and the UK.

Meanwhile, plans to enter the US automotive market are being held back due to the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) recently passed by the Biden administration. (CE)

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Copyright: BYD

Caption: "BYD Explorer No. 1" (© BYD)