BYD marked a significant milestone as its Ro-Ro vessel, Explorer 1, completed its inaugural seven-day sea trial in Yantai, Shandong. Guangzhou Shipbuilding International, a subsidiary of China State Shipbuilding Corporation, initiated the construction of the BYD 7000 dual-fuel car carrier (PCTC) project No. 1 in Nansha, Guangzhou, earlier this year. This venture, representing the “green low-carbon upgraded version 2.0,” holds strategic importance in BYD’s efforts to enhance its logistics and distribution capabilities.
BYD’s Ro-Ro vessel layout
The BYD 7000 dual-fuel PCTC ship is part of the PCTC series and boasts a length of 199.9 meters, a width of 38 meters, a design draft of 9 meters, and a design speed of 18.5 knots (34.3 km/h).
What sets it apart is adopting a natural gas (LNG)/fuel dual-fuel propulsion system, marking a notable move toward cleaner energy solutions in maritime transport. Additionally, the vessel incorporates a battery system and a shaft generator for the first time.
The ship’s design also includes energy-saving features such as energy-efficient devices, drag-reducing measures, and anti-fouling paint.
As part of the project, BYD is slated to become the ultimate cargo owner for two ships. This initiative is expected to address the longstanding logistical challenges European shipping companies face, presenting a considerable breakthrough in sea transportation.
Reports from last year hinted at BYD affiliates considering ordering eight ro-ro ships capable of transporting 7,700 cars each at a shipyard in Yantai, Shandong. The estimated cost of this ambitious endeavor is nearly 5 billion yuan. Six ships have been confirmed for construction, with an additional two as option orders. When combined, the contributions from shipyards in Yantai and Guangzhou are anticipated to add up to a fleet of ten ro-ro ships.
Growth in EV exports stimulates BYD’s capacity demand
The strategic investment in maritime logistics aligns with BYD’s expanding overseas market presence. In November 2023 alone, BYD achieved a notable monthly high in automobile exports, reaching 30,629 electric vehicles (EVs). The cumulative automobile exports for the year surged to 206,679 units, marking a fourfold increase compared to last year. The operation of ro-ro ships stands poised to be a key component in