One Finite Planet

One Finite Planet

BYD. Who?

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Living with an Atto 3 EV in 2023: An Australian Experience and FAQ.

This page began as a ‘Should you buy an EV or not?’ written from experience, but as it is impossible to cover every possible perspective, the example is an Atto 3 in Australia, so the more similar the vehicle being considered is to the Atto 3, and the more similar the country to Australia the more of this content that will be of interest.

For comparison with other vehicles, I have a separate page soon to be published comparing the Atto 3 to both other EVs as well as traditional internal combustion or hybrid vehicles.

Read More »

Software and tips for BYD Atto 3 + other BYD EVs.

Although this page is being updated to cover more topics time, it is launched with information on side loading Apps to the BYD Atto 3 prior to the 1.5 update in May 2023.

Rather than a typical webpaper, this page is really only of interest to owners of BYD vehicles.

See page contents for topics

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BYD Atto 3, AKA Yuan Plus: 3rd bestselling EV globally.

As of March 2023, this EV from the BYD brand that few have heard of, has risen to 3rd bestselling EV globally behind the Tesla Model Y and Model 3, and could this year overtake the Model 3.

Despite this level of sales success, as the Atto 3, as it is known outside China, arrives in new markets, reviewers often struggle to communicate the significance. As the international bestselling model of the BYD brand responsible for 6 of the 10 top bestselling EVs globally.

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BYD Atto 3 Australian Story.

I started a page on the Atto 3 back in April 2022, but the launch in Australia has become so complex that it justifies a separate page, so here it is together with NZ information, starting with content moved from the original page, but updated.

This is a page with details about the Australian, and New Zealand rollouts of the Atto 3 and the BYD brand, which from these humble beginnings, could become a major part of the automotive scene in both countries.

For the general overview of the Atto 3, including information learnt from the experiences of owners, including those in Australia and New Zealand, see the main Atto 3 page. For the strange events around the Australian launch, and the use of the centre rear seat for baby capsules, read on!

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BYD Atto 3 / Yuan Plus: The first 3rd wave EV arrives in Australia, and then the world.

The Atto 3 (or Yuan Plus) is not only EV giant BYD‘s, first global car, has now become the 3rd largest selling EV globally.

Launched as BYDs first global model and the first 3rd wave EV for the west, already outselling Tesla vehicles and #1 selling EV in some markets, the Atto 3 could even challenge to become the world’s top selling vehicle.

While BYD has exported cars before, the Atto 3 is based on the “global focused” e-platform 3.0, and with a more significant launch into larger markets than previous BYD tentative exports, should spearhead the international push of the world’s largest new energy vehicle maker.

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BYD is either the biggest, or 2nd biggest, EV brand in the world depending on how you count, and now the biggest selling car brand inside China, having taken the lead ahead of head of VW and Toyota.

As of March 2023, the Atto 3 from BYD has risen to 3rd bestselling EV globally behind the Tesla Model Y and Model 3, and could this year overtake the Model 3 globally.

BYD. Who?

BYD is either the biggest, or 2nd biggest, EV brand in the world depending on how you count, and now the biggest selling car brand inside China, having taken the lead ahead of head of VW and Toyota.

As of March 2023, the Atto 3 from BYD has risen to 3rd bestselling EV globally behind the Tesla Model Y and Model 3, and could this year overtake the Model 3 globally.

BYD: The Chinese EV brand with an impact comparable to Tesla.

Rapid rise to #1 Carmaker in China: From nowhere in 2020 to #6 in 2021, #1 in 2022.

No, BYD is not just “a Chinese EV brand”. It is the Chinese EV brand. Whether Tesla or BYD leads on sales globally depends on how you count the numbers, but no other Chinese brand comes close to BYD. In global EV sales by company in 2022, BYD was either #2 behind #1 Tesla, or with those positions reversed depending on whether PHEVs are included. The only other Chinese company in the top 10 was Wuling, with what is a technically a “quadracycle” that sells for around US$5,000.

When a review positions BYD as “one of the EV brands emerging from China”, that does not really capture the reality.

Market dominance inside China.

In China BYD, sells significantly more EVs than Tesla, and around 10x more EVs than anyone in China but Tesla.

In fact, BYD now sell more vehicles than any other brand regardless of EV or internal combustion engine.

BYD Outsells VW In China Through November, Becomes Top-Selling Brand“: Carscoops.

BYD Overtakes Volkswagen as China’s Best-Selling Car Brand

  • Shenzhen-based BYD sold over 440,000 vehicles in first quarter
  • Volkswagen had been top brand in China for at least 15 years
Bloomberg: Buffet backed BYD overtakes Volkswagen.

Car news China: Top-selling cars in April 2023 in China – BYD first, Volkswagen second, Toyota third

Which Car: BYD dethrones VW in China as number-one brand, led by EVs & PHEVs

BYD not only sells far more vehicles than any other Chinese EV brand, but BYD is in fact the top selling maker of all vehicles in China, having overtaken previous leaders such as VW-SAIC and Toyota. Yes, in the world’s largest car market, a brand making only plug-in vehicles, now outsells the traditional brands even their ICE vehicles sales. Vehicles like VW Golf and Toyota Corolla are no longer able to propel their makers to number 1 in sales. You now need to also be big in EVs.

This rise of BYD to #1 in China has been recent, and rapid.

BYD grew from over three-fold from 2020 to enter the top 10 car brands in China in 2021 at position 6, and then again over three-fold again in 2022 to overtake Toyota and VW to become not just the largest EV maker in the world’s largest car market, but the largest maker of all vehicles, despite themselves no longer producing any ICE vehicles.

In western press there is a tendency to generalise about “Chinese vehicles”, with the implication that all Chinese brands are the same, which would misleadingly imply that other brands from China are comparable to BYD.

Source: EV Volumes.

BYD Globally: From nowhere in 2022, to #6 in 2023?

BYD has a stated target of 4 million vehicles in 2023, up from 1.8 million in 2022, and if BYD achieves that 4 million mark, it will be around 6th of all vehicle brands on the global stage and would be an even more distant #1 plugin vehicles sales. Achieving #1 globally of all car makers and overtaking Toyota and VW globally, if even at all possible, is still further away than just one extra year.

Although even brands like VW depend more on China than any other market, BYD is still even more dependant than VW and Toyota on China, and 2023 could be an “interesting” year in China for car sales.

The position of BYD in global sales, is courtesy of BYD dominating the market in China, and China representing over half the global EV market, as well as 1/3 of the global vehicle market.

While BYD is not expanding internationally, the import duties that Donald Trump introduced for Chinese vehicles into the USA, means 7 of the world’s top 10 selling plug-in vehicles, and the most affordable 7, are not scheduled for release in the USA.

But the USA is not that far behind the rest of the world, because most of the rest of the world is only just now starting the receive BYD vehicles.

The BYD vehicle being received 1st in most markets is the Atto 3.

BYD Brand in China: Quality.

China vehicle quality ratings have BYD in 3rd place of 26 EV brands, and with a quality score above all 62 ICE brands. This means 3rd of 88 overall. For comparison, the two Toyota brands are #8 and #10 on the ICEV list, is Tesla sis #22 on the EV brands list. The reason there are two Toyota brands is western ICEVs in China are manufactured by JV partnerships, and many brands have two partnerships such as

The reliability ratings are impressive, and the brand is known for engineering, although they are not currently a standout out in software, and are not a premium brand, although they have recently launched a premium brand with two vehicles set to hit the market soon.

BYD, Also Worlds 2nd largest Battery maker and more.

BYD is also the worlds 2nd largest EV battery maker, as well as a world leader in EV Busses, monorails and more. This section also to be continued.

Tesla’s switch to BYD batteries is achieving faster charging times

BYD History.

It is often stated that BYD stands for “Build Your Dreams“, but it seems these words were added some years after the name BYD selected, and this has even been stated in an interview with the founder.

The Big Read: History of BYD

BYD in 2021, as described in early 2022.

The following is how I originally tried to describe BYD

BYD, the largest car company most people in the world anyone, other than EV fans, have never heard of, outsold Tesla within China in in 2021, and as BYD exports grow, has the potential to start outselling Tesla globally.

BYD is the only brand currently in the race with Tesla to be worlds leading EV producer, and is now set to move to a new level as they pivot from selling cars only China despite being a batteries, busses and trucks company globally, to being a true fully global brand with the Atto 3 and their Ocean series models.

Some bullet points:

  • 4th 3rd most valuable automobile maker in the world, behind only Tesla, Toyota and VW.
  • Have been producing electric vehicles since 2008.
  • 4th 3rd 2nd largest battery maker in the world, behind CATL, and LG Chem and Panasonic.
  • BYD batteries are in phones including iPhones, and their electric busses are already worldwide.
  • Warren Buffet Berkshire Hathaway group as significant shareholder.

For world’s largest automobile company by 2030, some predict Tesla, others that it will still be Toyota, and I am not alone in predicting BYD will be the largest, and they have had that plan since 2010.


Ranked: The Most Innovative Companies in 2023

Plug-in hybrids.

There is a belief in some circles that affordable plug-in hybrids will be the ones that will really start eating into the market share of full ICE vehicles in China. There is also a strong belief that many families that do not yet own cars in China may be more comfortable starting with a plug-in hybrid than a full BEV for now. Perhaps this is one of the reasons BYD is continuing with its range of “Super Hybrids” in its DM-i (Dual Mode Intelligent) and DM-p (Dual Mode but more powerful all-wheel drive) range.

BYD: A Look At The Other Side Of The Ocean & The Dynasty

What’s In a Name?

Brand and product names outside China.

BYD clearly is doing a lot right in China, but there is some question as to whether they have found the formula for creating brands and model names that will aid in a push onto the global marketplace.

Build Your Dreams?

So where did the “build your dreams” come from?

Chairman Wang Chuanfu explained in 2022 that the “BYD” name as simply the pinyin initials of the company’s Chinese name Biyadi, which itself was created to be unique and distinctive from existing trademarks; however, the company later back-formed a slogan, “Build Your Dream”, to fit the “BYD” name.

银柿财经 (Silver Persimmon Finance), “王传福:比亚迪“Build Your Dream”是这样来的” (Wang Chuanfu: origins of BYD’s “Build Your Dream”), 2022-04-02

A Small Showing, but With Big Dreams Archived 29 September 2017 at the Wayback Machine NICK BUNKLEY Published: 12 January 2009

To quote some text quotes a post on Facebook:

“In Mandarin it’s 比亚迪. Literally Biyadi. It has no meaning. Build your dreams is just made up to make BYD mean something.”

The name of the company is “Biyadi” and BYD is simply that name in “Latin script“.

Yes, there is a story that the name BYD was chosen initially to stand for “build your dreams”, but this seems to go against even the person who named the company.

Even before seen quotes from the founder, I had read that this slogan was added later and it always seemed far more likely. In the 1990s it was common to name a Chinese company with three characters, and those who wanted to be international chose three “western” (or “English”) characters either instead or in addition to Chinese characters. Names built from Chinese characters build words the same way Latin/Western style characters, as characters themselves are like words. Just as Chinese characters don’t need to stand for anything, I found many companies with three western characters where it never occurred to them the characters needed to stand for something.

Given the original logo looked a bit like the BMW logo, I kind of suspect they thought in choosing the three-letter translation of Biyadi, they were looking like BMW by having 3 letters.

not build your dreams. In some ways “build your dreams” is like the Audi “Vorsprung durch Technik” slogan, except Audi never had the VDT letters, and their slogan was never constrained by trying to fit with three letter name.

BYD Sub brands.

So far BYD has the premium sub brand “Denza”, the possibly slightly more premium brand “Fang Cheng Bao” and the most premium brand “Yang Wang”.

While the company has international ambitions, they really need work on coming out with global branding, with neither “Yangwang” (two Chinese characters) nor “Fang Cheng Bao” (three Chinese characters) seeming easy to sell internationally.

Even within the base BYD brand, having both the Ocean series and Dynasty series is challenging to make sense when entering new markets. Then there is the whole naming models after types of battleships, which may not work well in any market not comfortable with the idea of battleships from China.

Of course, the US has been sending a model named after a type of battleship to other countries for years, but then “Corvette” is not as widely associated with a battleship as “Frigate” or “Destroyer” and there has been talk of a “Landing Ship” morel or even series of MPV models.


  • 2023 June 15th : Now a separate page with “Build Your Dreams” section and other comments on nomenclature.
  • 2023 March 26th: Started as a section within an Atto 3 page.