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Years After Unveiling, BYD All-Electric e6 Still Not Ready for U.S. Market

EV buyers might jump at a chance to drive an affordable crossover with a huge 61.4-kWh battery pack, which has a nominal range of 186 miles. But the BYD e6 is not ready for prime time.

Whatever happened to the BYD e6 Chinese all-electric crossover vehicle? Remember the e6, which BYD displayed at major auto shows and aimed to sell to individual drivers through a network of dealerships? Well, that plan died when BYD realized the e6 wasn’t refined enough for U.S. consumers. Apparently, the e6 still isn’t ready for individual car buyers in the U.S.—even though the e6 is available now for fleet purchases, according to BYD spokesman Michael Austin.

“BYD is in no rush to launch U.S. consumer sales,” said Austin, in an interview with PluginCars.com. “We are finding great success offering our long-range EVs for high-utility fleet applications.”

By high-utility, Austin means a daily driving range of “100 miles or more.” Clearly, BYD is targeting the taxi market here. According to the information sheet for fleet customers, the e6 offers a “nominal range” of about 186 miles of eTaxi use on a single charge. An e6 can be used for two shifts of nearly 24 hours with one mid-cycle recharge, according to the info sheet put out by BYD about the vehicle. The battery can be fully charged in two hours, it says. It doesn’t specify what kind of voltage but that must be a DC fast charger. The battery has a whopping 61.4-kilowatt-hours worth of storage, using BYD’s lithium phosphate chemistry.
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