BYD’s Electric Taxi Fire Economic Observer Online Indepth and Independent

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Summary: The share price of BYD a hit after one of its taxis exploded in early Monday morning being involved in a high-speed

By Geng Huili (耿慧丽) and Xu (许伟明)

Issue 572, 3, 2012

Auto, page 33

by Song Chunling

Original [Chinese ]

Five days an e6 battery-electric car produced by China’s electric car manufacturer, the Shenzhen-based was involved in a fatal car accident, from China’s Ministry of and Technology have been to Shezhen to investigate the cause of the that engulfed the vehicle.

At the time, the share price of a company in which well-known investor Warren Buffet has a 10 stake, has also been hit by the surrounding the accident, with 6 billion yuan being off the company’s market value at one

The Accident

At about 3am on May 26, a 24-year old surnamed Zhang got into one of electric taxis with her in the southern city of Shenzhen. The was later involved in an accident a Nissan GT-R sports A third vehicle, a regular taxi, was also involved in the

A passer-by later described the of the accident What a fire! I a picture and left immediately, it may explode. A picture of the burning of the BYD taxi soon went


Aside from concerns the safety of electric cars, the also drew the attention of the after people began to that the man who later turned into police, wasn’t the one driving the sports car that the taxi.

According to BYD, the e6 taxi out of control after being hit and off the side of the road, where it hit a The seriously contorted car later into flames.

The Shenzhen later confirmed BYD’s of what happened. The Nissan struck the e6 taxi while at 180km/h and then crashed the other taxi, overturning it. The e6 caught fire after struck and was burnt to a shell.

reported that emergency at the scene said that the passengers and the driver of the e6 taxi to open the door, but failed the fire spread too quickly. in the other two cars was killed, the driver of the other taxi was slightly injured.

We are also for more information to be released as of the accident assessment report, a representative from BYD. As we it, the battery did not explode and was only damaged. The electric taxi has been taken away and by the Shenzhen police.

According to information revealed by the battery in the e6 taxi didn’t Car batteries are different from phone or laptop batteries, and won’t explode even there is an open fire. BYD lithium iron phosphate which are safer and cheaper compared with the nickel cobalt (NMC) batteries by Japanese and Korean companies.

The

This latest incident BYD’s e6 has once again worries about the outlook for the car industry in China. Skeptics why the e6 caught fire after the while the Jetta was not seriously BYD claims that the e6 was hit first and the of the crash was much heavier that which hit the other

In such an accident, regular can also catch fire.

BYD also said that the only caught fire the crash, which is different former incidents involving the (众泰) electric car and an electric bus in last year, in which vehicles simply burst flames. BYD’s e6 model had passed many safety and the battery had also reached a standard.

However, many are worried that even if with the battery didn’t this accident, that technology might still not be

Experts are also worried the launch of a great-leap-forward in the production of cars initiated in 2008 bring about many

Wang Zidong (王子冬) the 985 national electric car power test center thinks companies in China are repeating the of investing in low-quality battery

Chen Quanshi (陈全世), of the Tsinghua automobile research commenting on the Zotye accident, that small companies qualified (technology) should not be electric cars.

The Standards

If it’s later that the fire was related to the or the design of the electric car, not will BYD face the consequences, but the electric car industry will a huge hit.

However, the public cares about, is electric cars pose risks than traditional cars after a crash.

6 months of investigation into a Volt fire that last year, U.S. concluded that the battery of the is safe and electric cars are not likely to catch fire gasoline cars. However not has been persuaded by the findings of the

Chen Quanshi (陈全世) the mass production of electric shouldn’t be rushed and that standards should be applied.

Binggang (王秉刚) thinks the technology standards are essential in to assure the public of the safety of the

The Ministry of Industry and Information has already set 26 compulsory standards for of electric cars. However, the current disorder in the electric car the application of these standards has not uniform.

After the accident, Wu (吴经胜), senior vice of BYD, said that the of BYD’s electric taxi will continue to take to the and the accident will no impact on the confidence in developing new energy

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