Sunwin Bus Corp Bags Massive Order To Supply Columbia With New Energy Transport

Shanghai Sunwin Bus Corporation
Driverless electric public bus waits for passengers (Photo: Reuters / Ints Kalnins)

A fleet of new energy buses, along with a number of fossil-fueled units, were delivered from China to Columbia on Tuesday, marking a new economic partnership between both countries.

The new vehicles will be included in the newly established mass transit system in the city of Cali, the third-largest city in Columbia.

The delivery of buses, which were supplied by Chinese joint venture car manufacturer Shanghai Sunwin Bus Corporation, included 26 fully electric units and 21 traditional gas-powered units.

The Chinese firm is backed by Shanghai Auto-motive Industry Corp (SAIC), Volvo China, and Volvo Bus Corp. Half of the company is owned by the Swedish Volvo firms, while the other half is owned by the Chinese firm.

To commemorate the addition of the new units to the city's fleet, a ceremony was held this week. The inauguration was attended by various government officials and delegates, including Cali Mayor Maurice Armitage. During the ceremony, Armitage mentioned that the delivery of the new vehicles is a step in the right direction for the city in terms of establishing a more sustainable urban development.

The city mayor explained that the city itself does not particularly emit a lot of pollution when compared to other places like Bogota and Medellin, but its purchase of the new energy vehicles should allow it to prevent any unwanted environmental deterioration.

During the inauguration, it was also revealed that the delivery of the 26 new energy buses was actually just the first batch and Cali has already ordered another 110 units. The additional new energy buses are apparently expected to arrive sometime by the end of October. On top of that, the Cali government revealed that it is also making plans to purchase another 300 buses before the year ends.

Black and White Mass Transit, the private transportation firm that operates the city's mass transit system, had stated that the buses provided by Sunwin were far more advanced and feature-rich that its current units in operation. According to the company's manager, Eduardo Bellini, the Sunwin buses are packed with a lot of features that greatly enhance the riding experience of the general public.

Apart from providing no pollution, the buses come equipped with all of the typical features found on traditional buses such as air-conditioning and great ride comfort. The buses also feature USB charging ports on every seat and new every-saving LED interior lighting.

Bellini admits that China is currently leading the way in terms of the development of new energy technologies. Also present at the event was Sunwin engineer Zhao Qingzhen, who mentioned during the event that their products have been designed to be safe and easy to operate, catering to the specific needs of Columbia.

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