New BYD Han EV takes aim at German executive cars
14 May 2020
Author: Simon Harris
BYD is planning to launch a new electric car in Europe, aimed at drivers choosing cars such as the Audi A6 and Mercedes-Benz E-Class.
The Han EV is the first full-electric car equipped with new 'blade battery' technology, which BYD claims will deliver greatly enhanced safety, improved range capability and a simplified, smaller pack design.
The BYD Han will accelerate from 0-62mph in 3.9 seconds, but so far, the company will only quote NEDC range for its battery, at 376 miles.
We contacted BYD to ask whether it was prepared to publish a WLTP figure for range at this stage, but 24 hours later, we've had no response.
However, BYD will need to publish it ahead of the car's sale in Europe, which will happen as the company says it has made a "thorough appraisal of the European markets", and will position the car in the "45,000 to 55,000 euros range", which is around £40,000 to £49,000 to you.
It will be launched in China late in June, so expect to see the car introduced in Europe in 2021.
According to the company's news release, "the Han EV will also feature 'DiPilot' - BYD's new-to-market, self-learning, intelligent driving assistance system taking advantage of the latest 5G technology".
The next part of the release made even less sense.
"While BYD has pursued the tradition of naming its passenger cars after Chinese dynasties, the Han EV has been conceived, designed and manufactured to the standards more in tune with Luxury European cars."
We can't remember any Han dynasties in Europe from my history lessons, unless its an abbreviation for the House of Hanover.
Anyway, BYD already has a presence in the UK from supplying city-based car clubs with EVs, starting in 2013.
But things have moved on since then. The release states: "The R&D team for the Han EV comprises a wealth of high-profile executives from legacy European manufacturers, including BYD's global design director, Wolfgang Egger, whose expertise in creating highly desirable cars for the European market is evident in BYD's latest luxury saloon.
"The Han EV boasts cutting edge technology, benefiting from BYD's more than ten years of experience in the research and development of EVs," said Yubo Lian, senior vice-president of BYD, president of BYD Auto Engineering Research Institute.
"Its use of the ultra-safe Blade Battery, as well as BYD's in-house pure electric platform, body structure design, eco-friendly materials and safety systems make the Han EV the safest electric car currently on the market.
"We believe that the Han EV combines the best of Eastern wisdom and Western aesthetics," he said, "and will fulfil the growing overseas market for a high performance, long-range and ultra-safe electric car. In the longer term, we are also looking forward to seeing the Han EV making a positive impact in other markets around the world."
According to the news release, the Han EV adopts BYD's new 'EV Dragon Face' design language, "blending elements of a traditional Chinese Dragon with strikingly modern European design cues".
"The curved front-end and day-time running lights evoke the shape of a traditional Chinese dragon's face, combining style and functionality."
There was other design commentary in the release, but you can look at the photo of the car for yourselves.