Chinese mass produced hybrid car with 100km electric range now available

Chinese drivers can now buy a hybrid vehicle, with an electric-only range of 100kms. The BYD auto F3-DM vehicle retails for around $22,000 USD. More details here and at the BYD site.

Toyota, who I recently commented on, have been leapfrogged by BYD when it comes to making a vehicle that can be used largely as an electric car - the Prius does not yet have the range of the F3-DM or the ability to plug its batteries in at home to recharge it. This is the only hybrid mass produced car that I am aware of that can effectively be operated on battery only.

As most city trips are much less than 100kms operation of this vehicle in electric only mode is viable. Recharging at home takes 7 hours. A home owner purchasing 100% green power via the grid or with sufficient solar panels and who owns a F3-DM can now be genuinely emissions neutral in his/her direct consumption of energy by charging the car at home. Neither the home nor the car (provided trips are less than 100km) will produce any greenhouse gas in use.

The BYD car will be available in the USA in 2011. Am unsure if it will make it to Australia.

This is a great example of a carbon positive approach to business, and a very exciting development.

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2 Responses to “Chinese mass produced hybrid car with 100km electric range now available”

  1. Graham Davies Says:

    It is great to hear about developments in electric car technology. With China’s large population and increasing wealth, the number of cars on the road is staggering. In Australia, we may not have a population like China, but car use is certainly not on the decline. While electric cars seem a long way off mass production, it is worth noting Australia is on the way. A company in Harcourt, Victoria called Blade Electric Vehicles or BEV is producing “Australia’s first production electric vehicle”.

    The so called “Electron” developed by the company founder Ross Blade retrofits an existing Hyundai Getz car and replaces the petrol engine for a 2-gear electric drive powered solely by battery fuel cells. This gives an urban range of 120 km with regenerative braking and a top speed of 120 km/hour and a battery life of around 8 years. You can even have air conditioning, power steering and tow up to 400 kg, while producing no greenhouse gas emissions. As long as you charge the vehicle with green power then you are driving a highly eco-friendly vehicle. If charged using off-peak green power it will cost only $1 per 100 kilometers to run.

    Currently the Electron is produced for government, business and private use at a cost of around $40,000. While still reasonably expensive, it is not excessive and with increasing fuel costs and economies of scale the cost is expected to come down over time. In my opinion the Electron is certainly worth its merit and has great potential for urban driving in Australia.

    For more details, visit the website at

  2. Iain Says:

    Unfortunately for BYD, Chevrolet will beat them to market in the USA with the Volt, due in 2010. The Volt will also be a plug-in hybrid and capable of running on batteries alone. For more details visit Hybrid Cars Compared

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