Hong Kong’s first locally designed electric bus will roll out onto the city’s roads next month in a test run its creators hope will boost the local electric vehicle industry. The 12.5-tonne single deck electric bus, designed by the Hong Kong Productivity Council and Hong Kong Automotive Parts and Accessory Systems’ Research and Development Centre, took two years to complete. Made of lightweight T6 grade aluminium alloy, it weighs 10 per cent less than existing electric buses, while its gear-free permanent magnet synchronous motor and lithium polymer battery help reduce battery usage. Carrying a full load of passengers and running air conditioning, the bus consumes only 0.78kWh per kilometre. Charging its battery for four hours enables up to 380km of travel. Council chairman Stanley Lau Chin-ho said the bus was tailor-made for the city’s rough and curvy roads. “All core technologies were designed by local experts,” Lau said. “It benefits the future development of large-scale commercial electric vehicles and hastens the growth of the local EV industry.” The locally designed bus, however, was made in mainland China. Lau explained that was due to the lack of manpower and space in Hong Kong. He said the bus had undergone nine months of functionality tests in Chongqing and Dongguan to ensure safety. Project partner Green Dynamic Electric Vehicle Limited refused to disclose if they had been approached by any interested bus companies but said no purchase orders had been made so far. The 11.75-metre long bus can travel up to 70km/h and carry 75 passengers, with 35 seated and 40 standing. The HK$40 million project began in August 2013, and was funded by the government’s Innovation and Technology Fund. The bus will undergo one-month of road tests in the city.