Chinese carmaker BYD (Build Your Dreams) is gearing up to enter the Indian passenger vehicle space with the Atto 3, which was launched in China in February 2022. The all-electric SUV is expected to be launched at the 2023 Auto Expo in January.
- BYD Atto 3 to come to India as a CBU import
- Will use patented Blade Battery Technology
- To be priced around Rs 30 lakh
BYD Atto 3: to use patented battery technology
BYD made its India debut in 2017 in the commercial segment with electric buses, and followed it up with its all-electric MPV, the e6, for the fleet segment in November 2021. Now, BYD is preparing to take the plunge into the thick of the market with the Atto 3. Its direct rival is the MG ZS EV; measuring 4,455mm in length, 1,875mm in width, and with a wheelbase of 2,720mm, the Atto 3 is larger in every dimension.
It's more powerful too – the BYD Atto 3’s permanent magnet synchronous motor generates 204hp and 310Nm of max torque. The company claims a 0-100kph time of just 7.3 seconds for this SUV that weighs between 1,680-1,750kg.
In international markets, the Atto 3 is available with a choice of two battery packs – 49.92kWh and 60.48kWh – with a WLTP range of 320km and 420km respectively. The Atto 3 uses the company’s patented Blade Battery Technology, which is claimed to be far safer and more forgiving in hostile conditions than other battery technologies. Charging options include a 3-pin AC or a Type-2 AC charger, and it also supports up to 80kW DC fast charging that’s said to recharge its battery pack in less than an hour.
BYD Atto 3: features
The international version is generously equipped with LED headlamps, 18-inch alloys, panoramic sunroof, powered front seats, digital instrument cluster, 12.8-inch rotating touchscreen, electric tail gate and ambient lighting. Safety features include seven airbags, ESP, hill descent control, 360-degree camera and a tyre pressure monitoring system. It also packs in lots of radar-based advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), such as stop-and-go, fully adaptive cruise control, autonomous emergency braking, collision warning (front and rear), lane departure warning, lane-keeping assist, blind spot warning, rear cross traffic alert and rear cross traffic braking.
Company sources indicate that the India-spec Atto 3 “will come with all the ADAS features of the international models and that there will be no stinting on equipment.” However, all this will come at a price.
BYD Atto 3: to come as CBU import
The Atto 3, which will initially be imported as a CBU unit, won’t be cheap as it will attract high import duties. Sources indicate that the starting price will be in the region of Rs 30 lakh. Also, the Atto 3 isn’t a particularly contemporary-looking EV, and this could be an issue with EV buyers for whom a techy, futuristic design is important.
No doubt, the Atto 3 will have its work cut out in the Indian market where the hugely popular and substantially cheaper Tata Nexon EV has set the baseline against which all mass-market EVs are measured. However, BYD is hopeful that the Atto 3’s mix of the latest tech and strong performance will entice a set of buyers who are willing to pay more for a bigger and better equipped car.