Bus Manufacturer BYD Selects Stertil-Koni Lifting Systems for California Facility

STEVENSVILLE, Md. — Heavy-duty vehicle lift leader Stertil-Koni, which is well-known for its award-winning bus lifts and truck lifts, announced on August 20 that bus manufacturer Build Your Dreams (BYD) has selected Stertil-Koni heavy-duty vehicle lifting systems for its 550,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Lancaster, Calif. BYD is recognized as one of the leading suppliers of battery-powered electric transit and coach buses worldwide.

From left to right are: Bill Georgia, southwest lift & equipment salesperson; Ron Reazer, Stertil-Koni western regional sales manager Bobby Hill, BYD VP of sales; and Loren Wingenfeld, SWL sales rep and service tech.
From left to right are: Bill Georgia, southwest lift & equipment salesperson; Ron Reazer, Stertil-Koni western regional sales manager Bobby Hill, BYD VP of sales; and Loren Wingenfeld, SWL sales rep and service tech.

BYD began assembling buses in Lancaster in 2014 in what had previously been a shuttered 100,000 square foot RV manufacturing facility. Today, the upgraded plant is capable of handling the production of as many as 1,500 buses a year with its 750 employees. The facility is designed for additional expansion as its North American sales continue to rise.

BYD builds fully-electric transit buses that are 30 to 60 feet long, double-decker coaches that are 23 to 45 feet long, and articulated buses that are 60 feet long. The facility also is the final assembly site for medium and heavy-duty trucks that are used for cargo handling at ports and railroad yards, refuse collection, and food and package delivery.

In terms of BYD production at the plant, the requirements are exacting. According to Bobby Hill, VP of sales with BYD’s North America division, “Stertil-Koni lifts are a vital part of BYD’s North America division production process, warranty work and vehicle upgrades. The lifts allow our employees to examine and work on the undercarriage of our vehicles safely.”

Bobby Hill, VP of sales with BYD’s North America division.
Bobby Hill, VP of sales with BYD’s North America division.

The BYD team at the Lancaster location selected the Stertil-Koni ST 1085 cabled mobile column lifts for its facility. These vehicle lifts play an integral role in the manufacture and inspection of BYD’s clean energy buses.

Key features of these lifts include:

  • Lifting capacity of 18,500 lbs. per column.
  • Touch screen control console, known as the ebright Smart Control System, that provides all lifting information at a glance.
  • Connectivity that links up to 32 lifts in a single set.
  • Extra-long adjustable 14-inch pick-up forks that are well-suited to raise all types of vehicles safely and securely.
  • Stringent mechanical locking system for added safety.
  • Fast lifting and lowering, which requires only 94 seconds to reach a lifting height of 73 inches.

At the manufacturing plant, technicians on the shop floor can quickly and easily place ST 1085 lifts into four- and six-column configurations. The six-column configuration is central to the production and inspection of BYD’s extra-long, 60-foot articulated buses.

Helping to make it all happen was Southwest Lift & Equipment Inc. (SWL), a Stertil-Koni distributor that is based in San Bernardino, Calif. SWL provides vehicle lifts, shop equipment and service in the key markets of Southern California and Arizona.

Noted Dean McDonald, president of SWL, “Stertil-Koni Mobile Column Lifts leverage our tremendous company expertise in reliable hydraulic lifting technology—an approach that ensures efficient and smooth lifting with low maintenance—every time. For added safety, the ST 1085 comes with the coveted Gold Label designation from the Automotive Lift Institute (ALI), which certifies that lifts are third-party tested and proven to meet the stringent safety and performance requirements outlined in the safety standard ANSI/ALI ALCTV (current edition).”

Southwest Lift & Equipment and Stertil-Koni have made quite an impression on BYD’s employees, noted Hill. “The techs love the lifts. We had some other products here, but what really speaks highly about this lift product is that we continue to get more of them and not order anyone else’s. My preference for lifts has always been Stertil-Koni, and for me personally, I would not buy anything else.”

Concluded Dr. Jean DellAmore, president of Stertil-Koni, “Stertil-Koni is proud to support BYD in its mission to advance the passenger and commercial transportation industry with its advanced electric vehicle technology. For our part, Stertil-Koni strives to bring the very best in vehicle lifting technology every day, thereby ensuring the highest levels of safety, performance and customer support.”

About Stertil-Koni

Stertil-Koni is the market leader in heavy-duty vehicle lifts, notably bus lifts and truck lifts. The company serves municipalities, state agencies, school bus fleets, major corporations, the U.S. military and more. Stertil-Koni’s breadth of products meets all ranges of lifting needs, and includes portable lifts like the mobile column lifts, 2-post, 4-post, inground piston lifts, platform lifts, and its axle-engaging, inground, scissor lift configuration, ECOLIFT. The company’s innovative, inground telescopic piston DIAMONDLIFT is now available with an optional continuous recess system, which is ideal for low clearance vehicles. Stertil-Koni USA is headquartered in Stevensville, Md., and has production facilities in Europe, The Netherlands, and in Streator, Ill.

About BYD

As the Official Sponsor of Mother Nature, BYD, which stands for Build Your Dreams, is the world’s leading electric vehicle company. BYD provides innovative technology for cars, buses, trucks, forklifts and rail systems—like SkyRail. BYD creates a truly zero-emission ecosystem that features technology for solar electricity generation, energy storage to save that electricity, and battery electric vehicles powered by that clean energy. BYD has 220,000 employees worldwide, including nearly 1,000 in North America. www.BYD.com