Just as Japan’s most important carmaker announced it’s switching headquarters to Texas, the California Governor Jerry Brown visited the Byd factory in his state.
The Chinese automaker, which is also partly owned by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc just produced its first two electric buses on the Californian production line, as it strives to become a US and Canada player.
With Byd headquartered in the city of Lancaster, the Chinese company is delivering the tow battery operated buses to the Antelope Valley Transit Authority in northern Los Angles County.
“BYD is the harbinger of things to come,” said California Governor Jerry Brown, while touring the facility. “This is the great dream.”
According to Chief Executive Officer Stella Li, BYD Motors, which currently has 60 employees at the plant, will increase the workforce to 100 by the year’s end and seeks to grow to 200 in 2015.
Byd also aims to introduce cars in its US line-up, with four passenger-car models set to debut by the end of 2015, as it seeks to move on from bus production to the very lucrative passenger car sector. At the moment, Byd is the largest producer of electric buses, having made at least 1,300 to date, according to the company.