BYD and Tesla have evolved into frenemies recently – and that partnership is bringing better cars to customers in Europe, according to Tesla owners.

    Drivers on the German forum TFF have posted images of the charging curve on a new Berlin-built Model Y fitted with BYD lithium iron phosphate batteries, and compared it to that of vehicles with the CATL-sourced batteries they replace.

    The data shows both CATL- and BYD-equipped cars peak at around 170kW plugged into a Tesla public fast charger, but the BYD-equipped car is able to charge at (or close to) that peak for longer, allowing owners to spend a shorter time at a public charger.

    Although the new batteries may allow Tesla owners to charge faster than before, the Model Y isn’t the fastest-charging electric car in its class.

    The Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Kia EV6 are theoretically capable of hitting 350kW when plugged into a DC public fast charger, and both owners and media have repeatedly seen the car peaking north of 220kW, before slowing down to between 150kW and 190kW.

    BYD might be supplying batteries to Tesla, but the pair are still rivals. Recently, Warren Buffett-led Berkshire Hathaway sold a significant stake in BYD to avoid competing with Elon Musk’s electric upstart.

    Berkshire Hathaway, which also has sizeable stakes in Kraft Heinz Company, American Express, The Coca-Cola Company and Apple, recently sold 1.96 million shares in BYD, valued at US$58.9 million (A$87.96m).

    “We don’t want to compete with Elon in a lot of things,” Berkshire Hathaway boss Warren Buffett recently said at the company’s annual shareholder meeting, in response to a question as to whether Mr Buffett believes the Tesla CEO overestimates himself.

    MORE: Everything Tesla Model Y

    Scott Collie

    Scott Collie is an automotive journalist based in Melbourne, Australia. Scott studied journalism at RMIT University and, after a lifelong obsession with everything automotive, started covering the car industry shortly afterwards. He has a passion for travel, and is an avid Melbourne Demons supporter.

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