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Chinese-built EV set to be a global vehicle from the get-go.
We’ve seen plenty of Chinese automotive startups in the past, all hoping to break into the US market. Few will actually make that happen. The latest is the new Byton Concept, making its official premiere at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES). Clearly, it’s a crossover, a factor that’ll certainly increase its appeal. Its exterior design is handsome with hints of Land Rover and Nissan styling. Take note of the lack of side mirrors, both replaced by a pair of small cameras.
What’s clear, however, is that the concept you’re looking at looks nearly production ready. Byton claims its crossover will be able to travel up to 250 miles on a single charge in base configuration. The battery can be charged with up to 150 miles of range in just 20 minutes, and it requires only 30 minutes to charge the battery to 80 percent capacity. Even more interesting is that, according to Byton, the Crossover Concept will feature Level 3 autonomy when it launches, and Level 4 is not too far behind. Total horsepower is 272 hp while the dual-motor version produces 476 hp. Step inside and things get quite interesting.
Gone is a traditional dash layout, replaced by a massive 49-inch display, called the Shared Experience Display, stretching across the entire width of the dashboard. And yes, Byton claims this feature will make production. Cool. There’s also an 8-inch display in the center of the steering wheel which looks good and all, but what about an airbag? Other cool features include voice recognition, touch control, and biometric identification. There’s also Byton’s proprietary Air Touch sensors that enable front and rear passengers to control the Shared Experience Display with hand gestures. The seats also rotate inward 12 degrees. All told, Byton claims the Crossover Concept is 85 percent of what the production version will be like.
We expect the majority of the remaining 15 percent of changes will be inside, save for the large front display. If all goes to plan, sales will begin in the US sometime in 2019 with the base model beginning at around $45,000.