BYD’s electric car may not arrive in Australia until 2025, and a hybrid will be here next year for less than $100,000

The first dual-cab vehicle from Chinese automaker BYD is set to hit showrooms next year with hybrid power and a price tag under $100,000, but an electric-only version may be some time away.

BYD illustrations by Theottle.

The electric version of the upcoming BYD ute may still be waiting 18 months to two years from Australian showrooms – a year after the plug-in hybrid version is set to cost less than $100,000 – Driving Understands.

As previously reported DrivingThe Chinese automaker’s first double-cab pickup is scheduled to arrive in Australia in the first half of next year, pending any delays, as a long-range hybrid called ‘DM-i’.

It is planned to cost less than $100,000 in basic form, and official road testing in Australia is scheduled to begin before the end of this year.

It was already known that an electric-only version would arrive later – but it may be further along than initially expected.

said Luke Todd – Managing Director of BYD’s Australian distributor EVDirect Driving The new ute will be on display in China “soon”, ahead of its planned Australian arrival next year, pending any delays.

“(We plan to launch) the DM-i first. (There’s) no set time yet for full electrification. There will definitely be a full electric car, but we believe that for Australian consumers, once they see and understand the DM-i technology, they will see “The reason we brought this to Australia first.”

However, BYD Australia has not yet confirmed the launch date of the electric version Driving The company understands it could be 12 months behind the hybrid, meaning it could arrive in 2025.

BYD illustrations by Theottle.

Pricing has not yet been confirmed, but Todd said the cheaper variant is set to cost less than $100,000, when asked about it. Driving If the price of the base model will include five or six figures.

“What I can say is just look at our history… we (aim to have) the most competitive vehicle in our price range,” the executive said.

“We will have cars on display early next year, or thereabouts. We are still 100 percent on track for sale (opening orders) and delivery in 2024. We are hoping for the first half of 2024.”

It’s not clear whether BYD will undercut Australia’s first and only dual-cab electric vehicle to date, the LDV eT60, which is priced from $92,990 plus on-road costs – with rear-wheel drive only, a 330km driving range, and towing capacity With brakes 1000 kg.

The hybrid is planned to combine a 1.5-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine with electric motors – and may offer up to 100km of electric driving range, Mr Todt hinted – but final specifications have yet to be revealed.

A similar system has been installed on BYD’s new ‘Fang Cheng Bao Leopard 5’ off-road SUV in China (below), which claims a power output of 500kW, a 0-100km/h time of 4.8 seconds, and a towing capacity of 2.5 tonnes, A driving range of up to 1,200 kilometers with a full tank of gasoline and battery.

Mr Todd was keen to stress that a hybrid is an “electric platform vehicle… reintroduced with petrol”, rather than a petrol car that has been converted to a hybrid or electric vehicle.

This will be the first car sold by BYD in Australia that can be powered by petrol, as other passenger car models locally have been electric-only.

He said BYD engineers from Australia had spent time in China working on the ute project – and the opposite was true for Chinese engineers visiting Australia.

“We are working feverishly with BYD engineers. We just had a great engineering workshop where some of the high-level engineers in Australia who work for us went to China, and conversely, the pickup engineers from BYD came to Australia, doing some testing here.

“Formal testing and road testing (in Australia) will begin later in the year,” he said.

When asked about the requirements for the new vehicle that BYD Australia requested from the head office in China, Todd said:

“I think the main things we worked on with the engineers, and some of our messages that we had to the design team were that it should excite the die-hard off-road enthusiasts, the ones who like to get dirty and delve into the jungle stuff off-road, the backcountry, but it also had to be Suitable for daily driving as well.”

The BYD CEO said he was “pleasantly surprised” by the prototype he drove in China “two weeks ago,” and told… Driving “The specifications were really met in terms of maintaining what we asked for.”

Alex Misoyiannis

Alex Misoyannis has been writing about cars since 2017, when he created his own website Redline. He contributed to Drive in 2018, before joining CarAdvice in 2019, becoming a regular contributing journalist within the news team in 2020. Cars have played a major role throughout Alex’s life, from leafing through car magazines at a young age, to growing up around performance. Vehicles in a car-loving family.

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