BYD still committed to U.S. market

09:11, January 12, 2011      

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Chinese auto maker BYD Co is committed to selling electric and hybrid vehicles in the United States even after plans to offer an electric crossover to buyers in 2010 didn't materialize, the company's founder and chairman has said.

The US market remains important to BYD not just for selling vehicles, but for other green technology such as solar panels, energy-efficient lighting and large-scale battery storage, Wang Chuanfu told The Associated Press in an interview on Monday at the North American International Auto Show.

"We are still working on refining the strategy, the final sales business," Wang said through a translator. "We're working hard on that."

Last month, BYD - which stands for Build Your Dreams - started a trial program with a fleet of plug-in F3DM hybrids in Los Angeles, where the company plans to open its North American headquarters in August.

It plans more car testing and sales of its K9 electric bus this year before expanding to US consumer sales in 2012, Wang said. BYD wants to sell the e6 electric crossover in the US, and the 2012 e6 Premier being shown in Detroit promises a 300-kilometer range and a top speed of 140 kilometer pers hour.

Rebecca Lindland, director of auto research with consulting firm IHS Automotive, said BYD will soon need to start establishing a dealer network if its new target for selling in the US will hold.

Backed by billionaire investor Warren Buffett, BYD is using the Detroit show to highlight its "Three Green Dreams" strategy, which focuses on renewable energy generation, environmentally friendly energy storage and efficient energy consumption.

Source: Shanghai Daily
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