Customers who have ordered the new BYD Atto 3 electric SUV have been advised they’ll be waiting another six-eight weeks to take delivery.

    EVDirect, BYD’s local distributor, announced the delay in correspondence to customers.

    The delay pushes not only deliveries but also the timeline for test drives into August or September.

    Deliveries of the Chinese electric SUV were originally set to begin in July.

    EVDirect says it’s keeping customers in the loop and prioritising getting information to them first, and wouldn’t elaborate further on timeframes.

    “It is well publicised that the global automotive industry as a whole is under pressure from a range of supply chain issues and logistics disruptions,” the company said in its correspondence to customers.

    “While BYD’s model provides robust protection from many of these challenges, regrettably we have been impacted by the current holistic industry conditions.

    “While we apologise to customers for this date alteration, we are delighted to confirm that production of Australian BYD Atto 3’s has commenced and we have secured increased dedicated production capacity to enable a steady supply of vehicles into the Australian market commencing from August 2022.” now reads an estimated delivery time of October for new orders, though the configurator still displays September – except, unusually, the Atto 3 Extended in red.

    BYD cars will be sold both online and through Eagers Automotive dealers, with servicing handled by the latter and also by mycar (formerly Kmart Tyre & Auto).

    The company says it’ll release warranty and servicing information shortly.

    Vehicles will be handled over at BYD Experience Centres instead of mycar locations as was previously planned, with a list of these locations beyond the existing Darlinghurst, NSW location to be confirmed shortly.

    EVDirect says these will be in “convenient locations within major capital cities across Australia”.

    The company will also organise home delivery options for an additional fee if you live more than 50km from a BYD Experience Centre.

    In early August, the company will open a new BYD Customer Care Centre – including a call centre – in Brisbane.

    BYD claims it has taken more than 3000 orders for the Atto 3 already, which would put it among Australia’s best-selling EVs already.

    To put this 3000 figure into context, market-wide EV sales in Australia between January and May 2022 inclusive of Tesla sit at 8543 units, more than half of which are the Model 3.

    Priced from $44,990 drive-away depending on your state, the 4455mm-long Atto 3 competes not only with the similarly priced MG ZS EV, but also the Nissan Leaf and Kia Niro – both more expensive cars.

    The company says the Atto 3 is currently undergoing safety testing in Europe by Euro NCAP.

    Just four paint colours will be offered: standard white, along with grey, blue and red. The latter three will cost an extra $700.

    EVDirect also says there’ll be just one interior trim option and one alloy wheel option available, at least at first.

    Wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are in development and will be added as over-the-air updates.

    Standard equipment on the Atto 3 includes:

    • 12.8-inch touchscreen infotainment system
    • 5.0-inch digital instrument cluster
    • DAB digital radio
    • Panoramic sunroof
    • Single-zone climate control
    • Rear air vents
    • Surround-view camera
    • Automatic headlights
    • Power front seats
    • Auto-dimming rear-view mirror
    • Autonomous emergency braking
    • Blind-spot monitoring
    • Lane-keep assist
    • Tyre repair kit
    • 18-inch alloy wheels with Atlas/Linglong tyres

    The Atto 3 will be available in standard range form, or with a bigger battery with more range for a further $3000.

    Both use BYD’s in-house ‘Blade’ LFP batteries, with base cars packing 50kWh of capacity and extended range models 60kWh. The respective WLTP driving ranges of the pair are 320km and 420km.

    The battery powers a 150kW and 310Nm front-wheel drive electric motor, capable of pushing the Atto 3 from zero to 100km/h in a claimed 7.3 seconds.

    There’s a 400V charging architecture, with maximum AC charging capacity of 7kW and DC charging at up to 80kW.

    While not a household name in Australia, BYD is a giant in the ‘new energy vehicle’ space, which as well as cars produces electric buses and even batteries for other companies. Warren Buffett is a major shareholder.

    BYD has established an Australia-focused line at one of its factories in China, and plans to commence production of the first 15,000 cars for this market. That is the kind of healthy supply only Tesla can compete with.

    A further two BYD vehicle models will go on sale both online and in-store by December 2022 in Australia, the company adds, expected to be a small EV hatch and mid-sized EV sedan.

    MORE: Everything BYD Atto 3
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    William Stopford

    William Stopford is an automotive journalist based in Brisbane, Australia. William is a Business/Journalism graduate from the Queensland University of Technology who loves to travel, briefly lived in the US, and has a particular interest in the American car industry.

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