Electric Buses to Operate Around Mt. Namsan
Starting next spring, electric buses will operate around Mt. Namsan without polluting the environment.
Seoul City said Tuesday that 15 electric buses will run on three circular routes near Mt. Namsan from April. Eight similar buses will run on two circular routes in Yeouido and 11 on a route between Tancheon and Neungin Temple in the Gangnam area in September.
The buses will be able to cover 110kms with 322-horse-power motors once the lithium batteries are charged. The batteries can be recharged in 10-20 minutes at nearby bus depots.
The buses have been under development by Hankuk Fiber and Hyundai Heavy Industries, and will be formally registered as electric vehicles upon approval from the Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs late this year, a city spokesman said.
Each bus is expected to cost 650 million won initially but the price will drop to 400 million won, more than the 350 million won for the condensed natural gas (CNG) buses now being deployed in Seoul, he said.
The city plans to replace half of its total 7,600 buses with electric ones by 2020.
"Electric buses do not emit air-polluting nitrogen oxides like CNG buses do, and they produce some electricity and thus cut greenhouse gas emissions," said Kim Hwang-rae, chief of Green Car Distribution Team of City Hall. "As the buses' engines do not make noise, it will change the urban street environment greatly."