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First car freighter from BYD moors in Bremerhaven

Caption: Wolfhard Scheer

The “BYD Explorer No. 1” is the first RoRo carrier from the Chinese e-car manufacturer to arrive at a German port, and the fleet is set to grow.

The “BYD Explorer No. 1” started its maiden voyage in the port of Shenzhen, China, in mid-January. On 26 February, the almost 200 m long RoRo carrier moored at the BLG AutoTerminal Bremerhaven for the first time. It is the first of eight of the car manufacturer’s own ships to be used for transporting cars from China to Europe. [ds_preview]

“We are delighted to welcome the ‘BYD Explorer No. 1’ to our quay on its maiden voyage,” says Matthias Magnor, COO and member of the Board of Management of the BLG Group. “Our port has been open to car manufacturers from all over the world for many years. With this decision, BYD is also underlining the importance of our location as an international hub for automotive logistics.” The car manufacturer uses RoRo carriers for its vehicle logistics, but also ships its vehicles in containers. “Bremerhaven offers both options in a free port, which is unique in Europe and a great advantage for our customers,” says Magnor.

With over 1.7 million vehicles handled per year, BLG AutoTerminal Bremerhaven is one of the largest car terminals in the world. All well-known car carrier shipping companies serve Bremerhaven regularly and around 1,000 carriers call at the terminal every year.

BYD Explorer No 1 in Bremerhaven C BLG
© BLG

More, larger ships for BYD

The “BYD Explorer No. 1”, which can carry up to 7,000 cars, is the first ship built in China for the transportation of domestic electric vehicles abroad. The world’s largest electric car manufacturer, BYD, is already the industry leader in China. It has been accelerating its international expansion overseas since 2020 and has overtaken Tesla in global sales of electric vehicles. On the occasion of the delivery of its first new vehicle, the company announced that it intends to significantly reduce prices for electric vehicles in Germany in order to increase its market share.

BYD is doing the same as its competitors, both in China and in Europe: the company is having its own freighters built in order to have sufficient tonnage available for increasing exports. The “BYD Explorer No. 1” will be followed by another 200-metre ship built by Guangzhou Shipyard, after which four more, even larger ships will be added to the fleet. These 9,400-CEU ships with LNG propulsion will be built by CMHI Jinling and CMHI-Jiangsu. Other Chinese car manufacturers such as Chery, JAC Motors and SAIC have also either ordered their own ships or sought partners such as the domestic shipping company Cosco in order to be able to bring the increasing number of export cars onto the market.

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