Qin Plus will be on sale soon

Qin Plus will be on sale soon

BYD Company Limited (BYD) delivered 415,046 vehicles to customers in China last year, an eight per cent drop compared to two per cent for the market. January deliveries, however, were up 68% to 42,401, in a market which rose by 29.5% to 2.503 million*. 

Even though the company is known for electric cars, petrol-powered SUVs continue to account for the majority of sales. Which is why BYD plans to continue with a mix of EVs, HEVs, PHEVs and combustion-only models in the 2020s.

Many compare BYD to Tesla but the Chinese firm is far bigger - at least in its home market - than the American OEM, which delivered 135,449 locally built vehicles in 2020 plus 11,497 (-74%) imports.

*CAAM

Cars

Even though it only became available in June last year, the Han is already the brand's number one model range. The Han DM and Han EV, which are 4,950 mm long sedans, were announced to the Chinese media in January 2020. They differ in styling details and while the EV is available in one or two motor forms, the DM is a plug-in hybrid.

The single motor EV produces 222 hp and has a stated range of 506 km with a 65 kWh battery or 605 km with the more expensive 77 kWh alternative. As for the dual motor EV, the outputs are 222 hp (front) and 272 hp (rear). System power and torque are 494 hp and 680 Nm. The 77 kWh battery is standard and the NEDC maximum range is 550 km.

The single motor and dual motor Han EVs were the first vehicles to have BYD's own so-called 'Blade Battery'. This has a lithium iron phosphate (LFP) chemistry. The company claims that a ten minute fast charge allows up to 135 km of travel while from 30-80% of capacity takes only 25 minutes. Further, BYD says cold weather is not an issue with the Blade battery pack.

Higher trim level cars have a large touchscreen which can be positioned in either landscape or portrait format while lower model grades have a smaller, fixed landscape display. Outside, the looks are something of a cross between the aged Tesla Model S and the Peugeot 508. BUILD YOUR DREAMS appears in the middle of the tailgate.

As for the Han DM, its PHEV powertrain consists of a 2.0-litre petrol turbo engine and a single motor. Combined outputs are 436 hp and 650 Nm, the transmission is an eight-speed automatic and drive goes to all wheels. A ternary lithium battery is said to have a capacity of 15.2 kWh and the maximum NEDC range in EV mode is 81 km.

BYD told the media in May 2020 that it would sell the Han EV in Europe. No date was announced, nor were any countries although The Netherlands and Norway should be amongst the first markets.

Despite already possessing a vast array of models, BYD reportedly plans to expand the line-up further. One such vehicle is codenamed R2 and will supposedly be an electric coupe as previewed by the E-SEED GT concept. The production model should have two motors, four-wheel drive and power of up to 280 kW, reports claim.

Another car that Build Your Dreams will add later this year will be called Qin Plus. This 1.5-litre plug-in hybrid sedan is to have a Blade battery pack.

Images released last last year show a large screen in the middle of the dashboard, and as on certain other BYD vehicles, this can be tilted into either landscape or portrait format. Also, there won't be a conventional cluster of gauges ahead of the driver: instead they'll see a small screen. The car should make its motor show debut at Auto Shanghai in April.

The e3 joined the e1 and e2 electric vehicles in October 2019. This model is a 4,450 mm long sedan and closely related to the e2. Sales, which have not been strong (just 217 in December - seven more than the e1 at least), are restricted mainly to China. The life cycle will originally have been meant to stretch out to 2026 or 2027 but this seems increasingly unlikely.

Crossovers & SUVs

The s2, a prototype of which was exhibited at the Shanghai motor show in April 2019, went on sale in China during the first quarter of 2020 just as the Coronavirus was causing much of the Chinese economy to be put into hibernation. Alas, this 4.4 m long SUV hasn't set the sales charts alight. For that reason, a facelift which had been due in 2023 might be brought forward.

The Song, a 4.6 m long crossover which is up for replacement next year, was first seen in two forms at April 2015's Shanghai motor show: a petrol-electric hybrid and a petrol-electric plug-in hybrid. Neither of these was part of the launch range for the car's Chinese market release in October 2015 but they were added later.

Engines are either a 1.5-litre petrol turbo or a 2.0-litre turbo. The launch variants were front-wheel drive only but the PHEV has all-wheel drive. A facelifted range went on sale during September 2018.

BYD began selling the Song Plus and Song Plus EV in China during September (2020). The electric variant is powered by a 120 kW motor and has an NEDC range of up to 505 km. Both are 4,705 mm long and have a 2,765 mm wheelbase.

The BYD Dynasty concept, a large SUV, was revealed at April 2017's Shanghai motor show. The production model - the Song Pro - was revealed at the 2019 edition of Auto Shanghai. BYD said at that time that this 4,650 mm long SUV is based on its 'BNA architecture'. Production commenced in July 2019.

There are three powertrain choices: combustion engine, plug-in hybrid and electric. The petrol version is powered by a turbocharged 1.5-litre four-cylinder engine which produces 118 kW and 245 Nm. It is linked to a six-speed automatic transmission.

BYD should facelift the Song Pro triplets in 2023 and depending on trends in China, replace possibly only the EV in 2026.

DiDi

China's DiDi had BYD develop an electric MPV/minivan taxi. The D1, which looks not dissimilar to the VW ID.3 although it has sliding doors, is 4,390 mm long, has a 100 kW motor and can seat five. DiDi leases the model solely to registered operators via its relevant partner firms.

Production commenced in November, with the D1 launched under a pilot program in Changsha during the following month ahead of a larger roll-out in other Chinese cities. CAAM data show 1,000 deliveries exactly in December.

Toyota joint venture

In July 2019, TMC told the media that it had "signed an agreement for the joint development of battery electric vehicles (BEVs)" with BYD Company Ltd. The firms will "jointly develop sedans and low-floor SUVs as well as the onboard batteries for these vehicles and others with the aim to launch them in the Chinese market under the Toyota brand in the first half of the 2020s".

Further details of the specifics of the vehicles in question are awaited but given when the accord was announced, and allowing for any COVID-related delays, the first one should be released in 2022 or 2023.

Premium EV brand

Reports out of China in January stated that BYD has plans to create a premium division for electric vehicles. In other words, a challenger brand for Nio. The first model isn't due until 2023 and is said to have the internal codename of Dolphin. Some believe that the brand's name will be Dynasty.

Reports for many other manufacturers' future models are grouped in the OEM product strategy summaries section of just-auto.com.

Future platform intelligence

More detail on past, current and forthcoming models can be found in PLDB, the future vehicles database which is part of GlobalData's Automotive Intelligence Center. That includes BYD models not mentioned in this report.

Xiaopeng Automotive Technology (Xpeng brand) and CHJ Automotive (Leading Ideal or Li) will be the next OEMs in just-auto.com's series of future models reports.