BYD e6 electric MPV – Click above for high-res image gallery
When Chinese automaker BYD's E6 electric crossover hit the stage at the Detroit Auto Show in January, the ambitious automaker announced that the vehicle's production schedule was on track and that U.S. deliveries would get underway by the end of the year. Well, plans frequently change and BYD's dreams of delivering the E6 to American buyers by the end of 2010 isn't going to happen. Even though the E6 has been delayed, there appears to be some indication that the automaker could launch the electric crossover in the U.S. in 2011.
The Wall Street Journal prodded Stella Li, BYD's senior vice president and head of U.S. operations, for info on the E6's delay and reports that:
Li provided the WSJ with an updated launch schedule, telling the news outlet that 50 E6 electric cars – all destined for fleet duty – should hit U.S. turf sometime in 2011. Furthermore, Li declared that private buyers interested in the E6 will get a crack at owning one in 2012. We're not going to take bets that BYD's plans won't get derailed again.The holdup was caused by BYD's efforts to make the car roomier, especially its rear-seat area that was cramped thanks to a beefy battery pack that needs to be stored under the seat.
[Source: Wall Street Journal]