The e6 is a pure electric ‘crossover’ from Chinese company Build Your Dreams (BYD). BYD is a manufacturer of batteries, which is a key factor in the car having an official range of 186 miles. This is likely to be a main reason why London-based private hire company Green Tomato Cars is trialling a number of the cars – there aren’t many other vehicles around that can combine the space of the e6 with such a long driving range. However the car is expensive at £47,000 (before the government’s £5000 plug-in car grant).
We drove the e6 at Millbrook and it feels like a very early development prototype of electric cars that we tested around five years ago; compared to the latest offerings such as the Focus Electric, the e6 is way behind in terms of refinement, driving dynamics and performance.
Tesla may have entered the electric vehicle market with no previous experience of building cars and pulled it off, but based on the e6, BYD hasn’t succeeded in this area. It would make more sense for BYD to focus on its core competence of batteries, and partner with a car manufacturer to bring cars to market.
More of the latest low emission vehicles at LCV2013