BYD to sell e6 in China in first half of 2010


BEIJING, Jan. 19 – China-based BYD Automobile Company, backed by billionaire Warren Buffet, will launch its plug-in e6 sedan in China in the first half of this year for about 300,000 yuan (43,988 U.S. dollars), mainly supplying government, public services and taxi fleets. BYD also plans to sell the e6 in the United States at the end of this year with a price tag of about $40,000.

The e6 is powered by a lithium iron phosphate battery.

The car promises a range of 330 kilometers (about 200 miles) on a single charge. BYD says the battery can be quick-charged to 50 percent of capacity in 10 minutes, and fully charged in 60 minutes.

Wang Chuanfu, chairman of BYD, said recently that the car maker is aiming to become the world’s largest auto maker by 2025. Last year, BYD saw sales jump 130 percent to 400,000 vehicles in China. It set a sales target of 800,000 units this year.

At the Detroit Auto Show, BYD was the only Chinese car maker to attend. Its lineup also included the F3DM, the world’s first dual-mode plug-in hybrid.