The Japanese division of Chinese company (BYD) said yesterday, that it will start selling its first battery electric cars in the country as early as 2023, as the world’s largest electric car maker intensifies its plan to sell and make its cars available across major markets.
The Chinese company said that it will launch its multi-purpose electric sports vehicle “ATTO3” (ATTO3) in Japan, starting on January 31. The car travels 485 kilometers on a single charge and will cost 4.4 million yen ($32,735.66).
By comparison, the Nissan Leaf electric car has a range of 322 kilometers on a single charge and costs about 3.7 million yen.
The company said that the Japanese branch of “BYD” plans to introduce two more models by the end of 2023 and more than 100 dealerships in Japan by the end of 2025.
Gasoline-electric hybrid models are still more popular than electric cars in Japan. However, the share of battery-powered cars is expected to grow, in part because non-Japanese automakers such as Paid and Volkswagen are making their way into the market.
“We hope we can make our presence felt little by little as we work towards carbon neutrality, and as our customers demand a variety of choices,” said Atsuki Tofukuji CEO of BYD in Japan.
Japanese automakers have recently come under fire from green activists and investors for not adopting battery electric vehicles fast enough.
Toyota began leasing its first all-electric bZ4X in May in its home market, charging 106,700 yen per month for the first four years on a 10-year contract. However, it was forced to recall its cars after less than two months due to safety concerns, and production started again in October.
Just a year into its $38 billion electric vehicle plan, Toyota is already considering starting again to better compete in a market that’s growing beyond the automaker’s expectations.