BYD Sets 4th Straight Plug-In Car Sales Record

OCT 13 2018 BY MARK KANE 54

BYD will not let Tesla win without a fight.

BYD, the biggest manufacturer of plug-in electric cars in the years 2015, 2016 and 2017, is doing everything that’s possible to keep pace with Tesla and remain #1 for 2018.

In September, BYD set its fourth all-time record of plug-in car sales in a row, reaching 25,019 – over 4,000 above the record from August. Pace of growth increased to 121% year-over-year!

Plug-in share out of overall BYD volume stands at 56% (an all-time high).

BYD plug-in electric car sales in China – September 2018

The nine-month tally stands at 135,337. With three months to go, the target of 200,000 in 2018 is considered easy now.

At the moment, Tesla sold over 154,000 BEVs in 2018 and it’s probably already too late for BYD to compete for the title of the biggest plug-in car manufacturer in 2018.

Currently, BYD offers six plug-in models. Two of those models are available in both BEV and PHEV versions, so a total of eight options.

BYD sales breakdown:

  • Tang PHEV – 6,019 (3rd full month of second-generation and new record)
  • Yuan BEV – 5,008 (4th month on the market and another record)
  • e5 – 4,265 (almost record)
  • Qin PHEV – 3,866 + 1,207 BEV
  • Song PHEV – 3,014 + 132 BEV
  • e6 – 1,508

PHEV and BEVs are selling similarly:

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54 Comments on "BYD Sets 4th Straight Plug-In Car Sales Record"

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This article makes it seem that BYD competes with Tesla. That’s not the case until BYD starts exporting BEVs to the US or Tesla starts selling BEVs in China in large volume.

It competes with Tesla on the global plug-in scoreboard 🙂

I suppose that’s true if global sales are compared by brand.
What I meant was that BYD and Tesla are not in direct competition in either China or US.

Keep BYD in mind. Once they sort their quality issues, and establish the lowest unit costs in the world, they will export. Let’s wait and see Trump destroy another US leadership position, and give EV’s to China.

Oh yes, we should “keep” that in mind. /s

Remains to be seen whether they can establish the lowest unit costs in the world, especially while also sorting out quality issues… Thus far, the track record for Chinese car makers doesn’t look too bright.

Those green bars will continue to increase in hight in Q4 2018.

BYD will also have a 500 KM BEV version of their Tang SUV and a Song MAX DM rolling out later this year…

BYD who also makes their own batteries is having battery supply issues but will be opening multiple new factories over the next two years…

Uncle Warren is going to get BYD to keep competitive in the PHEV/EV Chinese market, and EVentually more so globally.

Do you have bus and truck numbers? Including those, BYD maybe above Tesla.
I’m sure that once Tesla sells its Semis, it’ll make sure everyone counts them 🙂

If you want to add buses Tesla will get buried in batteries…
BYD also sells BEV garbage trucks and other large trucks…
BYD sales volume outside of China keeps going up and up…
Plus the BEV buses generally replace old foul smelly soot ridden diesel buses…
BYD sold 12,777 BEV buses in China alone last year…
“Chinese manufacturers go global, as BYD is doing right now, the Shenzhen-based brand is already the largest eBus supplier outside China, with factories in operation or expected to become online soon in every Continent.”

That is actually not true. Tesla manufactures more battery kwh’s for vehicles than BYD does hands down.

No not really…
Panasonic manufactures batteries for Tesla and Tesla assembles them into packs the same as GM and most other auto makers…
Buses have huge huge batteries that dwarf the size of long range cars and when you times it by the 10,000 plus it adds up quick…

Panasonic manufactures more GWh of battery cells than BYD.

Tesla manufactures more GWh of battery packs than BYD.

Is that better?

Last year BYD capacity was 16 GWh this year they opened a New factory Tesla GF iş approaching 30 GWh İ dont know which iş ahead now. CATL is probably ahead of both.

10,000 buses with ~300 kWh each actually only adds up to 3 GWh… Of course they sell a bit more than that — but still much smaller than Panasonic/Tesla’s current 30 GWh per year.

The US has Panterra for buses, but, they do need additional funding to expand production.


They are only making a few hundred per year thus far — similar to BYD’s US production. Tiny compared to Chinese BEV bus volumes…

In September: 2700 buses and 184 “other” commercial vehicles (some form of trucks).
So far in 2018; 7848 buses and 233 “other” commercial vehicles.

Trucks are still small numbers and only getting started. For buses, they will probably end the year with 12-15k units. Often December is huge, so hard to predict.

All numbers are China only. Add another few dozen units to include global sales.

Thanks İ was looking for these numbers. Canyou give source.

It should be mentioned that unlike Tesla, BYD is highly profitable ($648 million in 2017).

BYD, started in 2002, doesn’t sell just EV’s.
They started their first plugin in 2008.

BYD profits are mostly the result of government policy.

Also unlike Tesla, BYD sold way more pure combustion cars than EVs in 2017.

Naive question. What keeps BYD from selling PHEVs and EVs in the US? Build quality? Tariffs?

BYD has flirted with that idea for 5 plus years and briefly sold their BEV e6 taxi vehicle here in very small numbers…
Performance of that e6 vehicle and build quality where originally issues but no longer…
Now tariffs are probably a non starter but tariffs aside it is a huge finical risk for any company to enter the US auto market…
BYD does sell their BEV buses, garbage trucks and other large trucks in the US from their factory in California…

GAC Trumpchi (yes that is their Chinese name) from China was fully intent on entering the US auto market (was already working on a dealer network) in 2019 or 2020 but has likely shelved those plans until the trade war is over and only then if it is favorable to do so…

They could bring their cars here to Europe, no killer tariffs here.

I would definitely be interested in the Yuan BEV.

Question is whether they can sell it at a competitive price…

I’d say build quality is still the issue, and once they feel they’ve achieved at least average quality to US cars, they will then export to the US. But, a bad start with a poor quality vehicle would kill the brand.

Actually, a lot of brands started by selling super cheap low-quality products, and became highly regarded over time. (Various Asian makers come to mind… If we look beyond cars, Samsung might be the most prominent example.)

Of course that only works if they can actually offer something way cheaper than established makers. When BYD tried launching the e6, that was not really the case…

@ blandman

Their focus regarding to passenger vehicles is currently mainly on the Chinese market.

Perhaps in a few years time (if things go according to their plans)?

Range is probably a concern as well. BYD uses exclusively LiFePo batteries. They are very safe (no thermal runaway), but do not have a very high specific energy. Their small SUV Song EV400 has 62 kWh battery and specified range is 400 km at 60 kph constant or 360 km NEDC. That would translate into something like 250 km WLTP or EPA. The Hyundai Kona 64 kWh has almost twice that range.

@ Leo B

If the price is very much affordable, then people will be willing to accept the lower range. Certainly if they don’t need that much range at all on a daily basis.

The fact that they can buy a brand new EV for a very affordable price will mean more to them.

The Mitsubishi i-MiEV used to cost almost €40,000.- in Europe.

In that regard an EV for about €20,000.- would be great.

@ Benz

Couple of things.

In my experience first time EV-buyers (that’s 99% of the population) are very wary about range, it’s their first concern, closely followed by charge time. In discussions I get a lot of remarks like “if an EV does 500 km on a single charge and can be recharged within 10 minutes, then I will consider buying one”. It’s proven very difficult to change the gasoline mindset.

Also when interpreting Chinese EV prices, be very careful with converting prices straight from the Chinese currency. Most EV manufacturers list the price including government grants, which amount from several thousand euro’s to maybe €10.000,- for a single vehicle. So the cheapest short range hatchbacks and small SUV’s are about €15.000 in China, but that is including those government incentives. Prices in Europe would be significantly higher.

That said, prices of EV’s must come down. So if importing some Chinese models helps to that effect, then let’s do it.

“That said, prices of EV’s must come down. So if importing some Chinese models helps to that effect, then let’s do it.”

More car manufacturers will start offering more new EV models. That will result in more competition as people will have more EV models to choose from. EV models will be offered in every price category.

From what I gather, BYD is in the process of switching to NMC; and AIUI all recently introduced/refreshed models already did the change.

(BTW, LFP batteries can enter thermal runaway too — just at a higher temperature…)

With the new Qin that came out recently I beleive BYD has fully switched to the new battery chemistry…
China will no longer give full rebates to plugins that don’t meet their new minimum range and specific energy denisty which the lifepo did not meet…

Congratulations BYD. Crossing 25,000 is a major achievement and this is equivalent to 300,000 / year.
They are in line with the requirements of the targets set by their government.

Whether BYD or Tesla contributes to more pollution is questionable.
While Tesla sells all electric vehicles with 250 mile / 400 km +, BYD mostly sells plugins and some electrics. But BYD also sells 1,000’s of electric buses which drive lot more distance / day and reduces pollution greatly.

This is not a fair comparison because you are counting plugin hybrids from BYD in their total. If you only included pure BEV’s Tesla beats BYD hands down. I think it needs to be an apples with apples comparison,

There doesn’t need to be a comparison at all.

The Plug-In models of BYD will attract more people. The marketshare of Plug-In models in general will increase as awareness will expand. Plug-In models have to become generally accepted in order to be more popular.

Well…it seems Model 3 sold more units in the USA in the last 2 months, or last 3, than all other PHEV’s combined, for the Quarter!

Plug-In models = PHEV + BEV

Both are important for the transformation (away from ICE, and towards EV’s).

BYD Plug-In sales numbers in China show that more people are starting to appreciate Plug-In models. And that is a good development in China.

Tesla is not that successful in China (yet). The Gigafactory in Shanghai will provide a path for Tesla to gain success in China in the next decade.

Tesla is successful in the US. And that is very good.

Finally, the dictatorship is making a change to improve the life of its denizens. Watch the videos of people buying face masks and Swiss compressed air tanks to understand what will happen Stateside if we continue bending over for Big Oil.

The US has regulated air pollution for 50 years now, which is why we aren’t choking on it like China, despite our addiction to Big Oil. That is unlikely to change too much for the worse: clean air is too popular.

Regarding 2017:
“Because of the slow beginning of the year, total sales in 2017 were 108,612 (up 9%), but that’s still enough for BYD to take the #1 spot in plug-in sales in China (fourth year in a row) and for the world (third year in a row).”

Regarding 2018:
“The nine-month tally stands at 135,337. With three months to go, the target of 200,000 in 2018 is considered easy now.”

That’s enormous progress.

What does that mean for 2019?

And China has 4x US Population, yeah?
BYD sells cars in China; Model 3 is Mostly Sold in the USA, other than some to Canada!

So it seems, market size wise, Tesla is spiking BYD now!

Plug-In car manufacturers aren’t really that much eating each other’s lunch. They are much more taking marketshare away from ICE car manufacturers.

Both Tesla and BYD are leading the way. Others will have to follow.

To be fair, BYD has much more competition in their market than Tesla has…

More players entering the playground means more competition.

Yes, the playground in China has more players than the playground in the US.

Lots more EV cars and buses sold in China than the U.S.

“BYD Sets 4th Straight Plug-In Car Sales Record”

Will BYD set 5th straight Plug-In car sales record in October 2018?

BYD is likely to set records for the rest of the year as they have launched new versions of most of their products recently and plugin sales in China are higest at year end just like the US…

I don’t think they will be anywhere near catching Tesla though…

BYD numbers are new orders in 2018 and the company is net profitable. Tesla numbers are deliveries of orders accumulated over the previous years and the company is still losing money.

The real question is did Tesla received as many new orders as BYD in 2018, and can they still do so if they had to be profitable? That would be apple to apples