Foshan, a prefecture-level city in central Guangdong Province, has been very active in adding hydrogen to its transportation system. It has now added 20 hydrogen buses to its public transport system in Gaoming district. This is the first batch of hydrogen buses it has received. H2 Bulletin understands that in August 2020 the district authorities invited bids for the supply of 80 hydrogen fuel cell buses, divided into separate projects.
These 20 hydrogen fuel cell buses are supplied by Zhongtong Bus Holding Co., Ltd., which is a Chinese bus manufacturer based in Liaocheng City in Shandong Province. It operates under two bus brands Zhongtong and Zhongtong Bova. Zhongtong is one of the pioneers in the Chinese fuel cell bus industry. It launched its first 9-meter and 12-meter hydrogen fuel cell buses in 2017. The 8.6-meter hydrogen fuel bus takes around 10-15 minutes for refuelling and offers 350 km range. These are almost similar specifications as European and American hydrogen fuel buses provide.
H2 Bulletin understands that the Zhongtong hydrogen bus’s gross weight is 18 tonnes with a capacity of 33-38 seats. Its speed can go up to 69 km/h. Looking at the fuel cell system, it uses Weichai technology. The Zhongtong hydrogen bus is installed with eight hydrogen cylinders with a capacity of 140 litres per cylinder.
Foshan has been at the forefront of embracing hydrogen as a fuel. In 2017, China’s first commercial hydrogen filling station was opened in the Nanhai district of Foshan, Guangdong Province.