At a time when buying a new car seems nearly impossible, Caleb Gittins found buying a BYD Atto 3 was as easy as ordering a takeaway. Not only that, but the car is available with a waiting period of only 3 months. EV Direct is making 1,500 BYD Atto 3 electric crossovers available per month starting in July (or so I’m told). However, the July shipment was sold out, so if Australians wanted a shipment, they would now have to order from the August and September shipment.
BYD is one of the largest manufacturers of battery electric cars in the world and even supplies batteries to Tesla. Until recently, BYD mainly sold cars in China. They are now available to private citizens of Australia. BYD previously tested demand with small shipments of Yuan Plus (now called Atto 3), T3 van and e6, mainly for use as taxis in Sydney.
Being brave may mean you get your new car sooner, but Caleb still finds it intimidating to order a car online without a test drive or even seeing it in the flesh (so to speak). However, he decided to go boldly. …
He’s excited to get his new car, but he has mixed feelings because he’s only seen the car in videos.
I asked him why he chose BYD. He explained that he had been looking for EVs for a while to replace his GM Cruze gasoline-powered car. Finished paying it 12 months ago and was waiting to see what was available that offered value for money. His partner (who drives a Tesla) gave him advice. Both Google and YouTube provided the information they needed to make a decision.
When pre-orders opened, he put in his preferences and made a leap of faith. Pre-order is refundable if he changes his mind. BYD Make Your Dreams had a price, range and features to suit its driving needs. BYD has been in touch via text, so he knows he has a call if he needs an answer to questions. EV Direct has also stayed in touch. He was informed that his car is now in production and can log into his account for updates. He has already received text messages from BYD Finance offering to help fund his purchase.
The vehicle will be delivered to Caleb via Mycar from Stafford in Brisbane. I asked how his friends reacted to his purchase. His response was very enlightening. “Everyone is acting positive. Buying an electric car is no longer a big deal. Mind you, they were surprised I didn’t take a drive test. It was like buying a computer online.”
For a $1,000 deposit, you can get your car in August. Available in blue, gray or white. Colors other than white cost a bit more. Red will be available in September. The Atto 3 comes in a standard or long range. If you enter your zip code, you will be told where you can receive it. Caleb ordered the Long Range – 420 km for $49,000, including road charges. The car comes with a 7-year unlimited warranty. Warranty on the battery is 7 years or 160,000 km.
Ongoing service will be provided by mycar.
BYD is just beginning to build its support ecosystem in Australia. It will take time for trust to develop.
Update: Caleb has now gone to Sydney and seen the car in person. “Hi David, I went and checked out the car today – looks great in person. Definitely happy with my choice. Tonight they said the test drive should take place at the end of June in all capitals.
Apparently, the showroom was very crowded. Trust seems to be growing rapidly.
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