Just a day before the inauguration of the Tesla Model S at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport, the Chinese car and battery manufacturer BYD (Build Your Dreams) presented 35 of the in total 50 e-taxi models for the Brussels market. Lined up with one of Brussels famous landmarks, the Cinquantenaire archway, as a backdrop, the operators and drivers didn’t tire singing the praises of this new, extremely quiet taxi. They praised the 300 km which the E6 can drive on one charge (“Enough for one 11 hour shift”, said one operator), the working comfort and the generous warranty on car (300.000 km) and battery, plus financial conditions the Chinese automaker provided for the purchase of the € 46.000 (ex-VAT) vehicle.
“If you have the choice between a Tesla S, a Renault Zoë, a Nissan Leaf or a E6, it’s not too difficult, one leading taxi operator said. One thing lets the e-side down, though: the lack of charging spots in the European capital. Each driver seems to have memorised all the charging areas in the Brussels capital, (including the one at IKEA) where the cab needs about two hours to be recharged fully. Besides more charging stations, drivers would like to see quick-charge stations.
Brussels minister for Mobility Pascal Smet, who admitted to be profiting from the e-cab-programme designed by his predecessor Brigitte Grouwels, promised an accelerated roll-out of charging spots and a more important role for the taxi in Brussels as important part of public transport.
• BYD: leading e-constructor in Brussels with 35 E6 electric taxis.