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BYD Is Going After The Luxury Market As It Sets Its Eyes On Expanding To Europe

Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA) enjoyed the non-existent EV competitive landscape for quite a while as legacy automakers such as General Motors (NYSE: GM) and Ford Motor (NYSE: F) struggled to evolve. But then, China’s leading EV maker, came to the scene and turned Tesla’s world upside down. When it showed its new model back in 2007, BYD Company Limited (OTC: BYDDY) was a laughingstock. But, no one is laughing at BYD now who went far from being a battery manufacturer with a poor attempt of making a car to Tesla’s biggest threat. During the weekend, BYD even unveiled a super EV that promises to challenge even the luxurious Ferrari on the speed front.

BYD Is Going After The Luxury Market

A large part of BYD’s cars is in the lower price range, but BYD is also going for its part of the luxury market. Last year, BYD introduced its luxury brand Yangwang. Its super EV, the U9, will come from its luxury line. With a top speed of 309.19 kph, or 192.12 mph and the ability to accelerate to 100 kph within only 2.36 seconds, BYD’s newest EV is in line with long-established automakers such as Ferrari. However, Chinese EV makers have a significant advantage over their global rivals, the fact that China is the key market for a lithium iron phosphate production. These batteries are cheaper because they do not require expensive metals like cobalt.

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BYD’s growth is unlike anything the automotive industry has seen in decades.

Last year, BYD made more than 3 million new-energy vehicles, made of 1.6 million battery-only cars and 1.4 million hybrids. But, BYD is now going for its piece of the luxury market while also expanding its global footprint beyond China. BYD does not sells its EVs and hybrids in the U.S. due to Trump era tariffs, which bodes well for Tesla, but it does sell buses. Even Tesla CEO admitted in January that if there were no trade barriers, the Chinese companies would pretty much demolish their rivals with their exported vehicles. However, Europe is another story. Last year, BYD announced it will build its first factory in Europe and the latest news suggest it will be in Hungary. Hungarian Prime Minister met with BYD’s leaders during the weekend to discuss this multi-billion investment that would be the greatest in the country’s history.  Through subsidies, Beijing is strongly supporting Chinese companies to expand internationally in response to foreign trade restrictions.

However, legacy automaker General Motors is also re-entering Europe after its 2017 exit. GM chose to leave Europe after nine decades to focus on North America and China. Moreover, General Motors chose luxury EVs for its comeback, going after France and Sweden first as it plans to expand to five European markets. General Motors just announced that direct-to-consumer sales of the Cadillac Lyriq will kick off in France as of March 23rd.

DISCLAIMER: This content is for informational purposes only. It is not intended as investing advice.

This article is from an unpaid external contributor. It does not represent Benzinga's reporting and has not been edited for content or accuracy.

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This article BYD Is Going After The Luxury Market As It Sets Its Eyes On Expanding To Europe originally appeared on Benzinga.com

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