Supporting Motors

Ireland’s newest car brand delivers another model

A second model from Ireland’s newest car brand might just be a trailblazer when it comes to lower prices for electric vehicles. It comes from BYD and it’s called the DOLPHIN and it arrived here in Ireland last week with its official launch at the K Club in Straffan.

Now in the showroom ahead of the 241 plates, this new hatchback comes with a wide range of standard features and very competitive pricing. It will appeal to eco-friendly Irish motorists keen to embrace lower-cost, emissions-free, all-electric motoring.

Built on BYD’s state-of-the-art e-Platform 3.0, and powered by its 60.4 kWh LFP Blade Battery, DOLPHIN boasts a range of 427km (WLTP) with a 30% to 80% fast charging speed of 29 minutes.

On a first drive around the stud farms of Kildare, there is a lot to like about the new Chinese car. It is well-appointed with modern technology and a decent amount of space inside, similar to a VW Golf. Customers will also be attracted to the internal design and the leg room in the back.

It has a light and airy feel with space for five occupants, with sports seats and headrests made from vegan leather. Front seats have 6-way electric adjustment for the driver and 4-way electric adjustment for the front passenger. There is also a large glass sunroof that adds to the bright cabin.

There are four trim levels – Active, Boost, Comfort & Design – each equipped with a wide range of standard specifications tagged to a competitive price offering that – in the case of first-arrivals Comfort and Design models – begins from €29,318 after state subsidies. Information regarding Active and Boost models will be announced nearer to their market entry early next year. The base model is expected to be about €25,000.

You might ask how BYD can produce their car at such a low price compared to similar sized cars from other brands. The simple answer is that BYD as a company started life 28 years ago as a battery producer, so supply is never an issue and there’s no middleman taking a substantial margin.

Their Blade Battery technologies don’t contain scarce materials such as cobalt or nickel and is present in the majority of the mobile phones used around the world today.

So far there are dealers in Dublin and Cork only but, according to BYD chiefs at the launch, negotiations are at an advanced stage with a potential dealer in Galway and we expect an announcement on this very soon.

Pictured: The new BYD Dolphin hatchback.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune:

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