BYD only started deliveries of its entry-level Dolphin just last week, but it already has big goals for the little electric hatchback.

    “Our first deliveries of Dolphin started last week and we plan to deliver about 1000 by end of [2023] (assuming no shipping issues),” said Mark Harland, chief operating officer of BYD’s local distributor EVDirect, to CarExpert.

    “Dolphin orders have already started climbing as people get a chance to test drive. Both Seal launch and Dolphin deliveries have also given Atto 3 a nice lift over the last week as more people experience the brand.”

    The BYD Dolphin is narrowly Australia’s cheapest electric vehicle (EV), undercutting the most affordable MG 4 by just $100 at $38,890 before on-road costs.

    1000 deliveries over little more than two months would make the Dolphin one of Australia’s strongest-selling EVs.

    GWM has delivered 283 examples of its rival Ora since May, while MG has delivered 941 examples of the MG 4 since it started deliveries in August.

    After a bumpy start, BYD has quickly established itself as Australia’s second best-selling EV brand behind juggernaut Tesla.

    To the end of September, BYD has sold 8706 vehicles in Australia – and that’s just of one model, the Atto 3.

    Not only that, but the Atto 3 is even outselling combustion-powered mid-sized SUVs like the MG HS (5854 sales) and Volkswagen Tiguan (5968 sales), and looming ominously in the rear-view mirror of the Nissan X-Trail (9350 sales).

    That works out to an average of around 960 Atto 3 deliveries per month, with the SUV proving popular not only with private buyers but also ride-share operators.

    If the Dolphin were able to maintain an average of around 500 deliveries per month in 2024, pending supply, that would put it at 6000 sales – somewhere between the Subaru Impreza (3013 sales last year) and Mazda 3 (9639 sales).

    BYD’s rise in Australia is set to continue with no supply issues and sharp pricing. The brand’s introduction of a ute and a larger SUV next year will form part of its plan to introduce two new models yearly for the foreseeable future, although a seven-seater SUV is still some time away.

    “We are just beginning, three models in 18 months, five models in just under two and half years and then more and more after that,” said EVDirect managing director Luke Todd earlier this month.

    According to Mr Todd, BYD can re-engineer, re-tool its production line and convert one of its vehicles from left to right-hand drive in just 12 months.

    MORE: Everything BYD Dolphin
    MORE: 2024 BYD Dolphin price and specs

    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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