BYD Positions Tesla as ‘Partner’ in Global EV Shift; Unveils Supercar

Byd u9

BYD Auto, which makes hybrid and battery electric vehicles, recently introduced a new supercar, the Yangwang U9 (what a name), priced over $230,000 USD.

The car is aimed at competing with luxury brands like Ferrari and Lamborghini. This announcement underscores BYD’s market dominance and broad spectrum of offerings, ranging from the affordable Dolphin model, priced under $14,000, to high-end supercars.

In an interview with Yahoo Finance’s Akiko Fujita, BYD’s Executive Vice President Stella Li highlighted the company’s perspective on Tesla and the broader EV market.

“Without them, I think the global EV market could not run so rapidly. So we respect them a lot. I think they are a partner and also they are like a way together, we can really help the whole world. To educate the market and push the market for transaction,” Li stated, acknowledging Tesla’s pivotal role in advancing the EV sector.

The discussion also touched on BYD’s strategic positioning as a tech-centric company, paralleling Tesla’s self-description. Despite the competition, Li pointed out that the customer overlap between BYD and Tesla in China is less than 15%, emphasizing that the real competition comes from traditional internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles. This perspective positions EV manufacturers as collaborators rather than rivals in the industry’s transition away from fossil fuels.

Li’s comments also hinted at BYD’s ambitions for global expansion, with a particular focus on Latin America and potential interest in the U.S. market. However, she noted the complexities of entering the U.S., including political factors, suggesting a cautious approach to such expansion.

The Yangwang U9 (say that name without chuckling) is scheduled to start deliveries beginning in China this summer.