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NE China city to launch hybrid power buses for Summer Davos
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A new type of hybrid power bus that cuts fuel use by 30 percent is to go into mass production for the Summer Davos Forum starting Sept. 10 in Dalian City, in northeast China's Liaoning Province.

"The hybrid power bus does not give off fumes when starting or being driven downhill," Zhao Zhongmin, design chief of FAW Bus and Coach, said Tuesday.

The bus meets Euro III emission standards. It will consume only 30 liters of fuel every 100 kilometers and discharge 20 percent less of emissions, Zhao said.

Zhao said half of the bus's cost, or 400,000 yuan (58,558 U.S. dollars), would be covered by government subsidy.

To encourage manufacture, research and development of more environment-friendly vehicles, China is offering subsidies in 13 trial cities, including Beijing, Shanghai, Changchun, Dalian and Shenzhen.

Each energy-saving or new energy vehicle used in public services attracts a subsidy of up to 600,000 yuan, according to a new policy jointly issued by Ministry of Science and Technology and Ministry of Finance.

The new hybrid bus is being developed and manufactured by FAW Bus and Coach, one of China's largest vehicle manufacturers, and will bear the brand name of Jiefang.

The Jiefang hybrid bus will be more comfortable and healthier than conventional ones. Noise emission from the new bus is low and it will not emit malodorous fumes, Zhao said.

The 12-meter, silver bus can carry 103 passengers and travel at a maximum speed of 85 kilometers an hour.

The municipal government of Dalian has ordered 150 such hybrid buses. And 50 of them will be running in the city during the Summer Davos event, Zhao said.

In October, another 100 Jiefang hybrid power buses will go into use in Changchun city, capital of northeast China's Jilin province.

The 250 hybrid power buses are only a small fraction of China's endeavor to produce 500,000 electric and hybrid power vehicles, which will account for 5 percent of the automobile market, in accordance with China's three-year development plan for the auto industry released in February.

The plan also requires each major car maker in China to develop certified new energy vehicles.

Transport consumes about 20 percent of China's overall energy. Without remedial actions, transport may soon account for more than 30 percent of energy consumption, said Zhao Baojiang, president of China Association of City Planning.

China's auto sales stood at 6.099 million units during the first half of the year, up 17.69 percent year on year, according to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM).

China became the biggest automobile market in the world in January, ahead of the United States. Sales and production figures in the first six months both set new half-year records.

(Xinhua News Agency July 28, 2009)

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