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Chinese Built Electric SUV is Already Running on Streets of CA

All electric powered SUVs created by BYD, $30 billion Chinese conglomerate have been rolling on the streets of CA as taxi cabs.  If you drive around Los Angeles you just might spot one moving along silently bearing an unfamiliar emblem.

BYD's e6 SUV can go nearly 200 miles on a charge, and at the touch of a button its battery will power your house if there’s a blackout. That's pretty impressive.  It’s quietly entering the US market by placing small numbers of the SUV, called the e6, in corporate fleets.

BYD has recently made a claim to be the first automaker to supply South America's largest all-electric taxi fleet, based in Bogota, Columbia.  The company also reached an agreement with London based taxi fleet to supply 50 e6 crossover SUV.  In total, there are as many as 800 e6 units being operated as taxi cabs worldwide.

That’s the strategy BYD has pursued elsewhere in the world. The company has sold the e6 to taxi fleets in Bogotá, Hong Kong and London. In China, the Shenzhen police are buying 500 e6s for use as patrol cars.

BYD's long term plan is not to produce cars only as taxis and buses, but become the next Asian automaker to compete with the big boys, following the path taken by the likes of Hyundai and Japanese automakers.

The company’s headquarters is where all the big car firms have their showrooms, west of downtown Los Angeles. It includes a rather bare-bones showroom displaying a rust red e6, as well as a gasoline-powered sedan—presumably just to help fill the space, since BYD doesn’t plan to sell it in the US.

The e6, in fact, features cutting-edge technology. The 186-mile range on the spec sheet which actually ends up with about 200 miles on a single charge, is more than double that of most other electric cars currently available in the US.  Factor in the fact that this is a larger crossover SUV, battery technology installed in e6 is more than impressive.

Additionally, the e6′s battery is bi-directional, meaning that if you press a button on the dashboard, the battery will discharge electricity—handy in the event of a power outage and of possible interest to utilities that would like to tap electric car batteries to balance supply and demand on the grid.

BYD’s $2,500 charging station will fully replenish the battery in an hour and a half, versus six to eight hours for most home chargers.  If the company can build its reputation through successful operations as fleet car, it won't take much before consumers line-up to buy an all-electric car made by BYD.

Chinese Built Electric SUV is Already Running on Streets of CA Reviewed by Blogs on 2:23 PM Rating: 5

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