BYD semi-truck driving on a road
BYD, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of electric vehicles, is bringing its all-electric heavy-duty Class 8 BYD 8TT semi-truck to Canada for the first time. Photo: BYD

The battery-powered Class 8 BYD truck is set to debut in Canada in the exhibitor show room at the EV & Charging Expo 2023 on May 17-18

BYD, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of electric vehicles, is bringing its all-electric, heavy-duty Class 8 BYD 8TT semi truck to Canada for the first time.

The truck will debut at Electric Autonomy‘s EV & Charging Expo 2023 in Toronto May 17-18 at the Enercare Centre.

“We’re very excited to bring our Class 8 truck to Canada,” says Frank Girardot, senior director of communications at BYD North America, in an interview with Electric Autonomy.

“We have 20,000 electric trucks operating around the world and several in North America, especially in the United States. We thought this is the time and the [Expo] is a great place to unveil the truck for the Canadian market.”

While this will be the first Canadian appearance for BYD’s Class 8 semi truck, the company already has an established presence in the country.

In 2019, it opened a manufacturing plant in Newmarket, Ont., to assemble buses for the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC). BYD also has buses on order or in operation in Victoria; Longueuil, Que.; St. Albert and Grand Prairie, Alta.

Girardot adds that BYD also has coach buses on the road in Ontario and B.C., as well as taxis in Montreal.

After unveiling the Class 8 truck at the EV & Charging Expo, Girardot hints that more Canadians can expect to see the truck operating in the country in the coming months.

“We’re anticipating making an announcement very soon,” says Girardot.

The Class 8’s features

The 2022 version of the BYD 8TT is the third generation of the truck. It can be used for drayage, regional haul and distribution work.

The truck boasts a working range of 240 kilometres and a potential range of 325 km, says Girardot. The truck also has an extended-range version with up to 485 km of range.

Equipped with a battery with an initial capacity of 422 kWh, the semi-truck can deliver a maximum of 483 hp and 664 lb-ft of torque.

The fast-charging time for the 8TT semi-truck is around 2.5 hours and it is powered by BYD’s proprietary Iron Phosphate Battery Systems.

The truck also comes standard with Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems (ADAS), which includes automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning system and blind spot detection.

Panel participation

The EV & Charging Expo 2023 is a two-day trade show and conference bringing together fleet operators, building owners, municipal planners and others seeking to incorporate zero-emission vehicles and infrastructure into their operations.

The event has over 50 exhibitors, more than 70 speakers and 30 sessions where vehicle manufacturers, charging station providers and related businesses will share knowledge and innovations. 

“BYD is not only debuting the BYD electric Class 8 truck on our Expo hall floor, but will be joining a panel to discuss how these trucks outperform their diesel counterparts in certain vocations and operations,” says Ilana Weitzman, vice president of strategic development at Electric Autonomy.  

During the EV & Charging Expo, BYD’s director of business development, national fleets, Jonathan Polak, will join a panel alongside Dave Earle, president and CEO of the BC Trucking Association; Christopher Ralph, manager of energy solutions and sustainable mobility at Lion Electric; and Dave Schaller, industry engagement director of the North American Council for Freight Efficiency (NACFE).

The panelists will discuss how battery electric trucks can replace and outperform diesel engines in many cases, considering cost, availability and duty cycles. They will also share data and their experiences with zero-emission trucks currently in use.

It’s not all about long-haul freight,” says Weitzman, who will be moderating the panel.

“Electric trucks perform beautifully, for instance, as yard trucks for drayage, as well as point-to-point vehicles, such as from a port to a distribution centre, or from a distribution centre to a retail outlet, saving significantly on fuel and maintenance costs as well as offering exceptional reliability.”

Information on and tickets for the EV & Charging Expo are available here.