The Chinese giant BYD, world number 2 in electric cars behind Tesla, has just lifted the veil on the prices of its compact Dolphin. It’s even cheaper than the MG4, and it’s coming soon!
Last May, the BYD Dolphin was exhibited in Spain at a local car show. We were even able to board this new electric car from China. We then had a first idea of Spanish prices, with an entry ticket at less than 30,000 euros. But the French prices, just unveiled by the Chinese brand, are even more affordable.
The cheapest version (Active) starts at 28,990 euros in France. For comparison, it takes 29,990 euros to get the cheapest MG4. But beware, as on the MG4, not all BYD Dolphins are created equal. There are indeed two different batteries (both of the LFP type), as well as several engines. Here is the summary in the table below.
|Active||≈ 350km||45 kWh||70kW (95hp)*||€28,990|
|Boost||≈ 350km||45 kWh||130kW (177hp)*||€29,990|
|Comfort||427km||60 kWh||150 kW (204 hp)||€33,990|
|Design||427km||60 kWh||150 kW (204 hp)||€35,990|
Autonomy and performance
As you can see, the first two Active and Boost versions make do with the small 45 kWh battery. BYD has not yet announced the autonomy of these in Europe on the WLTP cycle, but it is estimated at about 350 kmthanks to the conversion of autonomy on the Chinese CLTC cycle.
For the motorization, it is not clear, and the two finishes could adopt a single motor, or two different motorizations. It is thus a question of a power of 70 kW (95 hp) or 130 kW (177 hp), as on the Chinese versions, but some sources speak of a single engine shared by the two finishes. These will be sold for 28,990 and 29,990 euros respectively.
We see a little more clearly on the Comfort and Design finishes, which share the large 60 kWh battery, allowing a WLTP range of 427 km to be achieved. The power is 150 kW (204 hp) with a torque of 290 Nm and the respective prices of 33,990 and 35,990 euros.
Dimensions: a compact
On the dimensions side, it is necessary to count on a length of 4.290 m, a width of 1.770 m (with mirrors) and a height of 1.570 m. We are right on the dimensions of an MG4… or a Renault Mégane E-Tech. The Chinese brand announces a trunk volume of 345 liters (or 1,310 liters once the 60/40 rear seat is folded), and a wheelbase of 2.7 m to accommodate 5 occupants.
On the top-of-the-range version, the engine (front-wheel drive) makes it possible to go from 0 to 100 km/h in 7 seconds with a maximum speed of 160 km/h. Recharging is carried out in direct current with a maximum power of 88 kW allowing to pass from 30 to 80% in 29 minutes.
Charging in alternating current is announced at 11 kW. In winter, the heat pump (standard on certain finishes) will avoid melting the car’s range too much. V2L bi-directional charging (vehicle-to-load) will allow electronic devices to be powered directly from the car battery at a maximum power of 3.3 kW.
Driving aids are not to be outdone, since there is talk of semi-autonomous level 2 driving for the most upscale finish, thanks to adaptive cruise control coupled with centering in the lane.
Orders will be open this summer in French dealerships. There are currently two open in Paris and BYD hopes to open 15 to 20 by the end of the year. THE deliveries will take place in the fourth quarter of 2023. Will it be early enough to benefit from the ecological bonus before it turns its back on Chinese electric cars?
If you don’t know BYD, you should start coming across some. The BYD Atto 3 have just started their deliveries in France and will soon be followed by the BYD Tang and BYD Han. At the end of the year, the BYD Seal, competitor of the Tesla Model 3, will be added to this list. It is also possible that the BYD Seagull will come to an end in France, which would make it a real competitor to the Dacia Spring.
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