The German-Chinese joint-venture BYD Daimler New Technology Co., Ltd. (BDNT) unvieled its new electric creature under the DENZA brand at Auto China 2014. The "advertized" range of 300 km though sounds a bit too much, as the calculations clearly shows...
Let's start with the tech specs:
- Peak power – 86 kW (117 hp);
- Continuous power – 68 kW (93 hp);
- Max. torque – 290 Nm;
- Top speed – 150 km/h;
- Battery capacity – 47.5 kWh;
- Energy consumption – 17.2 kWh/100 km (under the Chinese cycle);
- Range – 253 km (again, under the Chinese cycle).
That last one sounds more like it, because at 17.2 kWh/100km, to drive 300 km on a single charge you'll need capacity of 51.6 kWh... But, you know automakers, they like to exaggerate things so we better count on users' reviews once they start coming in.
Now there's one thing we can't figure out and that is why would they say the range is 300 km, when it's 253 km per Chinese cycle? Do the math and you'll end up with the latter. Well, OK, 300 km or even more is probably doable if someone's gentle enough on the accellerator pedal.
Otherwise 250 km on a charge sounds pretty decent to us, providing there's quick charging option available (which there is). You're safe to cross Bulgaria with just one quick charge somewhere in the middle. Just keep in mind you'll need at least 45 minutes to almost top it up. You'll also need a 50 kW ABB or similar fast charging station for this.
Yeah, that's why Tesla's Superchargers operate at 120 kW (135 kW in some locations) – to speed the process up. Imagine that – your DENZA EV will only need like 20 minutes for a full charge at such a station. And even less if charged up to 80 percent or so.
About the pricing – being Chinese doesn't mean cheap in this case. Here couple of trims:
- Lifestyle (strarting from €37,000) – leather interior, ESP, 8" screen, etc.;
- Executive (starting from €45,000) – Xenon headlights, navigation +TV, Harman-Kardon surround audio, etc.
Seems to us by launching such an EV they're targeting Nissan LEAF, which also gets a Chinese version and possibly a new 40 kWh battery (take it easy, we're talking about 2016 :).
That's pretty much where our interest in this DENZA EV ends – they'll only sell it in China. Fair to say, however, it's getting close to a very usable EV, good enough to be your sole family car. It only needs a bit of a more "usable" price :).