BYD Leads All Automakers In Electric Car Sales Through First 10 Months Of 2015

DEC 28 2015 BY MARK KANE 19

BYD plug-in electric car sales in China – November 2015

BYD plug-in electric car sales in China – November 2015

BYD is top plug-in electric car manufacturer by volume this year

BYD is top plug-in electric car manufacturer by volume this year

Founded in 1995,  BYD seems thrilled by its first position among plug-in electric car manufacturers for the year 2015.

The Chinese carmaker did a tremendous job, improving its position form 7th in 2014 to overtake all established brands.

Recently, BYD issued a press release quoting our worldwide sales report for October (based on EV Sales Blog data) and November BYD-China numbers.

With over 43,000 plug-in cars sold in 2015 through the end of October (estimation), BYD topped the table for global plug-in sales for the very first time both for the month and YTD results.

Add in another ~7,000 plug-in cars delivered in China in November, and that shoots BYD to the 50,000-unit mark for the first 11 months of this year. Not bad, especially when you read BYD’s note that states that brands such as GM, Toyota, Fiat and Kia are now out of Top 10.

The large and booming Chinese plug-in market is helping BYD.

BYD electric bus in LA

BYD electric bus in LA

BYD stated that they also “supplied more than 6,000 electric buses and 5,000 electric taxis globally”. The plan for 2016 is 300 electric buses in North America alone.

BYD doesn’t stop at plug-in cars or buses, as they also produce batteries, PV, energy storage systems and more plug-in vehicles for different applications:

“What is BYD’s next move? BYD revealed their go-to-world-markets strategy at the 2015 Shanghai Auto Show with the “7+4 Strategy”. The 7+4 strategy is to change the world by replacing high-utility, fossil-fueled vehicles with clean, efficient, even more reliable EVs for seven on-road vehicle markets in this priority:

  • Battery Electric Buses (Shuttles and Rapid Transit)
  • Battery Electric Taxis (used in 2 and 3 shift operations daily)
  • Logistics Vehicles (operated over 18 hours daily)
  • Private Vehicles for the Consumer Market
  • Battery Electric Motor Coaches
  • Construction Vehicles
  • Waste Management Vehicles

As well as four off-road vehicles for specialized applications:

  • Mining Operations
  • Marine Ports
  • Warehouse and Logistics
  • Airports”

“This multi-prong approach to reducing global emissions is revolutionary as no other company in the world has addressed these issues on such a mass scale. Building upon BYD’s success in manufacturing innovative Iron-Phosphate batteries, the Three Green Dreams approach is designed to eliminate most of the environmental problems we face today. These three dreams include zero-emission solar/wind energy generation, storing the energy in safe, reliable, non-toxic battery solutions, and delivering the renewable energy to an array of on-road and off-road vehicles for a measurable reduction in CO2 emissions.”

BYD plug-in hybrid vehicles Qin and Tang

BYD plug-in hybrid vehicles Qin and Tang

Categories: BYD


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19 Comments on "BYD Leads All Automakers In Electric Car Sales Through First 10 Months Of 2015"

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Buffet invested in BYD, they have the batteries, the buses and the cars. With China wanting more EVs, BYD can supply them.


Is there a BYD car dealership in California, or in the USA?

Micke Larsson

No. So far they only sell buses and fleet deals (mostly taxis) for their E6.

Hopefully they can bring the Qin/Tang there someday though.

Anti Lord Kelvin

Unfortunately a lot of Chinese “sales” are for municipality, regional or provincial government fleets. In the particular sales side, a majority of owners of hybrid plug-ins cars bought them because tax breaks and to avoid the lottery which is imposed to ICE cars in the majority of Chinese cities. After the that, the lack of private garages to charge at home is driving a lot of owners to go almost exclusively to fill their tank in the most traditional gas station instead of riding with their batteries.


There’s absolutely nothing wrong with EV fleet sales to local government. On the contrary, all citizens should demand that their local government do the same. Such a fleet sale to Denmark, btw, has helped prop up the i3’s numbers recently.

As to your second point (which in certain ways contradicts the first), this is interesting and might be a correct description of reality in many places in and outside of China. But can you provide a link to corroborate this?


From the viewpoint of EV sales, certainly there is nothing “wrong” with selling an EV to a government. A sale is a sale.

But a government-mandated sales quota is a rather poor indication of demand, and it’s not a very good indication of how many gasoline-powered miles are being replaced by electricity-powered miles, either.

It’s great for BYD’s profits that China’s central government has mandated that 30% of all government auto purchases must be alternative energy vehicles, but what happens to that EV that becomes part of a government fleet? Does it actually get driven, or do government employees avoid using those cars because it’s hard to find a place to charge them up in China? And what happens to the market if next year, China decides the mandate for EVs isn’t paying off, and cancels it?

It would be better for BYD and for the EV revolution if most EV purchases were a result of consumers actually wanting to buy and drive EVs, rather than mostly being purchases to fill a government quota.

Micke Larsson

Why did you respond to me? I was talking about California, the US and the all electric E6 and buses.

Your concern on the other hand is a minor one and one we have seen in the US, the Netherlands and other places too. It’s a part of the transition, getting the markets to start and to start building the corresponding infrastructure.
The chinese are generally smart and economical so they will find a way. Just like they have done with the hundreds of millions of EVs that are already on the roads.


Fabian asked:

“Is there a BYD car dealership in California, or in the USA?”

BYD imported 11 E6’s to sell in the USA on a test market basis in 2013, but nothing since. The Wikipedia article on the car plausibly suggests the biggest barrier is that a Chinese-made car can’t pass the tough U.S. safety standards.

More info here:

Micke Larsson

Nothing since… except for the fleet deals which has the E6 running in a number of US cities.

Still in (very) low numbers though. There are probably not more than a couple of hundred on the roads in the US.

Crash testing is most likely not the problem since BYD has a state of the art crash test facility and has been getting top grades (higher than many US/European brands) on the China-NCAP.

The E6 has has more success in Europe so the problem rather seems to be the US attitude and prejudice.

douglas white

actually the answer lies in their marketing strategy….they’re ONLY selling to Fleets.
California, Michigan, and NYC only at this time. working on Phila., possibly among other cities.


Do you have a citation indicating that anything past those 11 e6s have actually been sold in the USA?

I see various articles indicating the e6 is being used in fleets in other countries, and that it is offered for sale to fleets in the USA. I even found an article here at InsideEVs from 5 months ago, entitled “Opoli’s San Diego Ridesharing Fleet To Get 50 BYD e6 EVs” (link below).

What I have not found is any report that BYD has actually sold e6s in the USA beyond that batch of 11 shipped circa 2013.

I’m from Missouri on this one: Show me!


I agree with you. The reason they are selling exclusively to fleets is also a results of consumer sentiment, as fleets are more rational buyer based on economics.


It’s great to see an actually useful graph here at InsideEVs; one where you can actually see all the lines on the graph.

Here’s hoping this is a start of a trend, and that we won’t see any more of those graphs which hide part of the data behind areas of solid color.

Pretty colors should serve the needs of the graph, not vice versa.

marco loglio

In the position ten the company name is Zotye

marco loglio

In the position 8 the correct company name is Kandy.

Mark C

And in position 4, the “rich mans toy” Tesla. Go Tesla!!


If the count included buses, they’ve have taken #1 long ago…

At this point BYD has no serious global competition on the e-Bus market.


BYD press release 31 December 2015:

“We end our year with the unprecedented delivery of a huge pure electric bus fleet to the city of Shenzhen, making significant headway towards sustainable development, and hoping cities worldwide will follow suit. What a wonderful way to welcome 2016!”

There are a couple of BYD buses running in London on a route I cross on my bike commute. London is failing air quality tests and the old diesel buses pour out fumes into the faces of pedestrians & cyclists. I hope London will follow the city of Shenzhen with large orders for battery electric buses.

I found a realistic assessment of battery electric buses and other options: The BYD bus is noisy, which needs to be improved. The reduction in 12 meter bus passengers from 96 to only 69 due to 3 ton battery is a major drawback. (@2:39) In congested cities, 96 buses instead of 69 would not be practical. That explains why the new iconic London double-decker bus is a plug-in hybrid (@2:55). At 3:03 you can hear that the diesel generator is loud and I have noticed the generator often kicks in while the bus is at a bus stop, which needs to be sorted out. For single-decker buses, it is disappointing that BYD used vertical battery packs rather than raising the floor level. Another option is 3 ton battery on the roof, which another bus manufacturer is trying. Clearly their is no panacea for urban transport. A bicycle is still the most practical way to get round central London; no waiting for the next bus & the bike takes the route you need, so it is quickest door-to-door up to about 8 mile range in London traffic, even if like me you are no longer able to pedal fast for miles.… Read more »