BYD Launches First Cargo Ship for Vehicle Exports: The Explorer No. 1

In a historic move, China, already crowned the world’s largest exporter of vehicles, continues its automotive ascendancy with the launch of the BYD Explorer No. 1, the first Chinese-built cargo ship explicitly designed for vehicle exports. Departing from Longkou, a port city in northeastern China, the vessel, commissioned by electric vehicle giant BYD, is destined for Europe, marking a strategic milestone in the company’s global expansion.

Built to transport up to 7,000 vehicles, the BYD Explorer No. 1 is a testament to China’s booming automotive industry. Commissioned by BYD, China’s top-selling auto brand and a prominent player in the electric vehicle market, the cargo ship is managed by Zodiac Maritime Ltd. and constructed by International Marine Containers Group Co.

As part of BYD’s ambitious growth strategy, the Explorer No. 1 embarks on its maiden voyage to Europe, with the goal of expanding overseas sales. BYD, despite outselling Tesla in electric vehicle sales during the fourth quarter of 2023, aims to solidify its position as the number one electric vehicle manufacturer globally.

Beyond its monumental cargo capacity, the BYD Explorer No. 1 is an eco-friendly vessel, aligning with BYD’s commitment to sustainability. With a cruising range of 15,800 nautical miles (29,261km), the ship incorporates natural gas as part of its power source. This green alternative to traditional ship fuel underscores BYD’s dedication to environmentally conscious practices in both manufacturing and transportation.

The ship set sail in Longkou, making a stop in Yantai on January 9 before heading to Shenzen, BYD’s headquarters. From Shenzen, the BYD Explorer No. 1 will embark on its transcontinental journey to European shores.

As China emerges as an automotive powerhouse, the BYD Explorer No. 1 symbolises not only BYD’s global ambitions but also the nation’s increasing influence in the international automotive market.

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