Although it is yet to deliver its first electric vehicle to a retail customer in Australia, China BYD’s has made an extraordinary claim that – if true – would rank it second on the sales charts behind Toyota within 12 months.
Chinese electric car specialist BYD has announced an ambitious plan to sell up to 9000 vehicles per month in Australia within the next 12 months.
Such a significant sales result within the first full year of operations has never before been achieved by a car company in Australia.
Announcing the rollout of three models next year — for a total of five electric cars over the next two years — the Australian distributor of BYD, EVDirect, claimed the start-up has capacity and the backing from the Chinese factory to reach its extraordinary target .
EVDirect managing director Luke Todd told Drive at a preview event in Brisbane that BYD plans to manufacture 3000 examples of each of its three models – per month – some time next year.
“Within 12 months, we’ll have three models on the (Australian) market being delivered with production capability of 3000 vehicles per model per month – that’s 9000 vehicles per month,” said Mr Todd.
“Our production capability of 9000 vehicles per month means we are very confident that’ll be leading the charge.
“So far, the sales volume (in Australia) has exceeded what we thought.”
Mr Todd said the recently announced Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) exemption introduced by the Federal Government would likely trigger an increase in interest in electric cars.
As of July 1 2022, the 47 per cent FBT rate no longer applies to electric cars priced below the Luxury Car Tax threshold of $84,916.
Leasing an electric car could result in tax savings of up to $16,600 per year for employers and employees who use the “statutory method” of FBT calculation – which assumes a flat rate of 20 per cent personal use of a work vehicle.
“We believe we’ll see a huge upshoot in electric vehicle purchasing in general,” said Mr Todd.
If such a massive sales result after starting from zero deliveries is successful, it would be a remarkable achievement – potentially making BYD the second highest-selling car marker in Australia.
However, industry analysts remain skeptical that such epic sales growth will occur so rapidly.
In 2021, Japanese car giant Toyota sold 223,642 vehicles, averaging more than 18,600 deliveries per month.
Fellow Japanese car maker Mazda was a distant second, reporting 101,119 sales in 2021 with an average of about 8420 per month.
BYD’s target of 9000 deliveries per month would also make the Chinese car maker Australia’s biggest electric vehicle seller, surpassing current leader Tesla.
From January to the end of June 2022, Tesla reported as sold 4653 examples of its Model 3 sedan in Australia.
With supply chain issues easing and the upcoming arrival of the Model Y electric SUV, Tesla has claimed it could overtake its 2021 total of 12,094 vehicles reported as sold.
EVDirect says it has received more than 3500 orders for the BYD Atto 3, with the first deliveries due to begin later this month after supply chain setbacks pushed back its local debut originally scheduled for July.