The order is BYD's first for car carriers, each capable of carrying up to 7,000 vehicles.
(Image credit: Guangzhou Shipyard International)
BYD's (OTCMKTS: BYDDY) order for vehicle carriers has been confirmed by a Chinese shipbuilder, months after the rumors festered.
Guangzhou Shipyard International Company Limited (GSI) has been awarded BYD's order for two pure car/truck carriers (PCTCs), the China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC) subsidiary said in a WeChat post on January 23.
The two dual-fuel PCTCs, which can be powered by either liquefied natural gas (LNG) or fuel oil and can carry up to 7,000 vehicles each, are a green, low-carbon upgrade 2.0 to GSI's PCTC series of vessels currently under construction.
The vessels have an overall length of 200 meters, a beam of 38 meters, a design draft of 9 meters and a design speed of 18.5 knots (34.26 kilometers per hour).
GSI said it is the first time to equip such vessels with battery systems, axle-belt generators, and use energy-saving devices and drag-reducing anti-fouling paint, making them green, intelligent, environmentally friendly and efficient car carriers.
The order is the first time BYD Group has ordered car carriers as the ultimate cargo owner, and will guarantee a stable supply of transportation capacity for BYD's new energy vehicle (NEV) exports, GSI said.
BYD's joining hands with GSI is a good start of cooperation between the Chinese auto manufacturing giant and the world's leading shipbuilder, GSI added, without providing other information including the amount of the order.
On July 29, 2022, maritime information service platform Xinde Marine News reported that BYD will order multiple PCTCs to meet the company's future car export transportation needs. This is the first time CnEVPost has seen the rumor.
BYD will purchase six and up to eight LNG dual-fuel PCTCs capable of transporting 7,700 vehicles, which they expect to deliver from 2025 onward, the report said.
BYD held discussions with at least three shipyards, including CSSC Huangpu Wenchong Shipbuilding and China Merchants Jinling Shipyard, according to the report.
On October 29 last year, local media Caixin cited multiple sources as saying that a BYD affiliate would order eight ro-ro vessels with a capacity of 7,700 cars at a shipyard in Yantai, Shandong province, at a total cost of nearly 5 billion yuan ($700 million).
BYD basically determined that 6 vessels will be built, and the other 2 vessels are option orders, according to Caixin.
On November 27 last year, Xinde Marine News reported that BYD was about to announce that it will first order two 7000-CEU PCTCs at GSI and was in contact with other shipbuilders for the remaining shipbuilding orders. The latest release from GSI confirmed the report.
In addition, Xinde Marine News also reported earlier that a number of automakers, including Chery and NIO, were planning to order their own car carriers.
Local automakers are ordering car carriers because demand for shipping -- especially ocean-going ro-ro business -- has risen significantly as exports surge.
BYD is China's largest maker of NEVs and began aggressively expanding into overseas markets last year.
The company sold 235,197 NEVs in December, with cumulative NEV sales for 2022 at 1,863,494 units, up 208.64 percent from 603,783 units in the same month last year.
In December, BYD sold 11,320 NEVs in overseas markets, down 8.1 percent from 12,318 units in November.
The company first announced overseas sales figures for NEVs in July 2022, with cumulative overseas sales of 50,021 units since then, according to data monitored by CnEVPost.