German intercity bus company FlixBus is investing in e-buses produced by Chinese bus makers, and planning to test them on their long-distance routes for the first time in the world.
According to the Munich-based bus company, the first all-electric e-bus will begin test operations between Paris and Amiens, France in April.
The electric buses for this route are made by China's Zhengzhou Yutong Bus Co.
In summer 2018, the second Flix-e-Bus will hit the road between Hessen and Baden-Wurttemberg, Germany, as part of the German domestic network expansion for summer travelers. For this route, all the e-buses will be supplied by China bus maker, BYD.
"Currently, the Chinese bus models are the state-of-the-art concepts for e-mobility," FlixBus told Xinhua.
The company said the e-buses in its fleet have a range of 200 km for now. However, this range is expected to increase in the near future as the technology used in e-Bus batteries is quickly developing.
"This is a potential turning point in mobility. Likewise, the first all-electric long-distance bus is a signal to bus manufacturers to drive innovation and develop alternatives to pure diesel vehicles," said Andre Schwammlein, the founder and chief executive officer of FlixBus.
FlixBus was founded in 2013, and has quickly become established as Europe's largest long-distance bus network. In 2017, it carried 40 million passengers.