Build Your Dreams’ (BYD), the China based automaker that has emerged as the world’s biggest maker of electric vehicles, will soon be releasing its first EV in Australia, in what could be the most significant development in the local market since the release of the well received Tesla Model S.
According to an article by Caradvice, The BYD E6 electric vehicle will initially charge hire-car and taxi fleets, although it will also make its EVs available to private buyers.
The ambitious Chinese company, which made headlines in 2008 for securing a US$238 million investment by Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway, offers buyers a 75kWh battery pack, a range of 300kms, and an appealing purchase price of around $80,000.
Although EV sales in Australia have been sluggish, with less than 1,000 sold before the end of 2014, the surging popularity of Tesla’s Model S, which sells from around $140,000, is opening up markets for EV makers looking to cash in on the growing mainstream popularity of EV’s amongst consumers.
The company has stated that it does not see itself competitor to Tesla, noting that Tesla is concentrating at the high end, while BYD is looking at mass-market models.
“This is not about competition. The market is so huge, it needs more people’s participation in the market. Tesla is targeting high end, there is a bit of an overlap, but we are focusing on electric cars and buses in different markets,” BYD CEO Wang Chuan-fu said.
BYD has cheaper models than the E6, but it is the only BYD model available in right hand drive.