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Korea begins first commercial electric bus service

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December 27, 2010

Korea begins first commercial electric bus service

Korea begins first commercial electric bus service

The Seoul Metropolitan Government (SMG) has claimed a world first by deploying electric buses on a commercial route. Previous electric bus operations have all been trials, or in the case of Expo 2010 in Shanghai, free public services. The buses went into service on December 21 after an 18 month development project with Hyundai Heavy Industries and Hankuk Fiber.

The electric coaches serving on the Mt. Namsan circular routes are 11.05 meters long and run up to 83km with a single charge. The lithium-ion battery pack can be fully charged in less than 30 minutes and the bus has a maximum speed of 100 km/h. There's also a regenerative system that reuses energy from brakes when running downhill.

The body is made of a carbon composite material, not of iron plates, which considerably reduces the vehicle's weight while reinforcing durability. The electric buses are also equipped with automatic slant boards for wheelchair users.

The bus is shaped like a peanut and decorated with designs symbolizing the Namsan Tower and landscapes of Mt. Namsan.

SMG has replaced five buses on the Namsan circular routes with electric vehicles. It plans to gradually substitute all 14 buses with electric coaches to minimize any inconvenience of citizens that may be caused by the introduction of the new buses. It also plans to build two more battery chargers on Namsan by March 2011, increasing the number from two to four.

SMG expects that the electric bus service has enabled Seoul City to move one step further toward a "Green-Car, Smart City." SMG has set a goal of putting a total of 120,000 electric vehicles in use in the city by 2020, which will account to 50 percent of all public transport vehicles, 10 percent of sedans and one percent of trucks and vans.

6 Comments

LOL... I am currently in Memphis, TN not far away from Chattanooga TN. Chattanooga among other things is known for its "electric buses". In reality 95%of the passenger miles are still on diesel buses. They have been tooting their electric bus horn for 20 years.

Electric buses window-dressing to make stupid liberals people think their leaders are hip, modern, tree hugging liberals.

Michael Mantion
28th December, 2010 @ 01:57 am PST

World first? Ridiculous. I've seen some electric buses gone conventional in Paris (France) since at least 2008 and even in Vientiane (Laos) since 2009.

Renaud d'Avout d'Auerstaedt
28th December, 2010 @ 03:07 am PST

RE: Michael Mantion comment - "Electric buses window-dressing to make stupid liberals people think their leaders are hip, modern, tree hugging liberals."

Therefore, South Koreans and the French (electric garbage trucks for 2011) are stupid liberals.

dmia5
28th December, 2010 @ 09:42 am PST

Kim Chee with tomatoes , mayonnaise, hamburgers and bread are my favorite sandwiches. Now we have something just as good, the electric bus. No more noise and fumes. If I ever visit Seoul, I would not miss the oppkortunity of riding one of them. Some day I hope we will have electric buses like these in all our cities.

Adrian Akau
28th December, 2010 @ 01:44 pm PST

"...the electric bus service has enabled Seoul City to move one step further toward a "Green-Car, Smart City."

Perhaps.

But that electricity has to come from somewhere, so unless these South Koreans have many more nuclear power plants than we in the West are aware, they are burning lots and lots of Chinese coal or Iranian oil to generate all that 'green' electric power.

Locomotivebreath1901
2nd January, 2011 @ 04:22 pm PST

The difference between these electric buses and those the other writer mentioned are these have Lithium batteries to give them extended range.

Electric vehicles are as much as 95% efficient compared to gas or diesel. So even if they were using Chinese Coal or Iranian oil to make the electricity, the vehicles would go considerably further on the energy produced....but lets hope they are intent on developing Solar PV and other solar technologies, such as heliostat, reflector trough, wind towers, etc. instead of fossil fuel.

The point is sneering at advanced projects is stupid, we need more advanced vehicle technologies, just like the computer and cell phones keep being improved. Wake up you conservative dolt. Liberal is a word derived from Liberty. Conservatives voted to remain subject to the Kind of England...liberals wrote the Constitution and Bill of Rights and those were the most Liberal documents ever conceived upon which a new government would be based. The conservatives in America are just making the gap between the super wealthy and the average Americans wider and deeper. The bankers caused the economic crash all over the world...and then they benefited from the reduced property values and what effectively has happened is the largest land swindle in history. So much for "conservative" ethics, values and integrity. They are just liars tweaking everybody with their unbridled greed.

Donald Eyermann
6th January, 2011 @ 12:16 am PST
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