BYD Wants to Rule The World Hong Kong's Taxi Market

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt
byd wants to rule strike the world strike hong kong s taxi market

Scaling back from its former intentions of becoming “China’s No. 1 automaker by 2015 and the world’s leading car maker by 2025,” China’s BYD now wants to become a world-class fish in Hong Kong’s taxi pond.

BYD has six electric e6 taxis running in Hong Kong, across the border from its Shenzhen, China, headquarters. Its plans call for much more: “We expect to increase the number of e6 taxis in Hong Kong to 5,000 in three years,” Liu Xueliang, general manager of BYD Asia Pacific sales, told Reuters. Hong Kong Taxi & Public Light Bus Association said it is renting from BYD an initial fleet of 45 taxis for around US$1,000 each per month.

Back home in China, BYD sold about 1,700 e6 vehicles last year. They go for around $60,000 and are reluctantly bought by local governments and taxi companies that want to shine their green image.

Hong Kong’s taxi fleet consists mostly of often LPG-powered Toyota Crowns. Last year, BYD announced plans to export 50 e6 taxis to London.

Join the conversation
  • Philadlj Philadlj on May 15, 2013

    Who would have thought a company whose bread-and-butter car is an E120 Corolla powered by a 30-year-old Mitsubishi engine would struggle so mightily to become China’s No. 1 automaker...

  • NN NN on May 15, 2013

    what's really interesting is the market share of Chinese cars in Hong Kong...practically nil, in this quasi-Chinese city. 5000 e6 taxi's would clearly change that.

  • Silverkris Silverkris on May 15, 2013

    That would be interesting. As a past HK resident, I remember the initial resistance from the taxi drivers over switching from diesel to LPG gas (due to the infrastructure availability over fueling, IIRC). The fact that they are already doing trials with the car probably bodes well for future acceptance/implementation. I do wonder, however, does the economic numbers make it feasible? Besides painting it in red and silver (the taxi colors of Hong Kong).