Daimler joint venture launches new EV brand in China

The partnership between Daimler and Chinese automaker BYD has launched a new brand called DENZA, which will produce what the Chinese call “New Energy Vehicles” – EVs and hybrids. The very first DENZA, a concept EV, is now on display at Auto China 2012 in Beijing.

Shenzhen BYD Daimler New Technology (BDNT) has provided copious details about the styling – chrome inside and out, wood and copper interior features, and an ambient light system that “makes night driving more pleasant” – but so far no practical specifications. From the picture, the new EV seems to be a four-door sedan. It was designed, and will be built and sold, in China.

“We brought traditional Chinese elements forward into the next generation with a priority on ergonomic design and some futuristic innovations,” said BDNT CEO Lian Yubo. “The rear seating area was designed to feel as much as possible like a lounge area. The lounge character really comes out through the reclining rear seats integrated into the design.” According to BDNT, the new model “succeeds better than most EVs at keeping the batteries out of passengers’ way. Combined with the rear-hinged rear doors, the DENZA concept car is easily accessible, with no awkward battery-related steps to clear while entering or exiting the vehicle.”

 

 

Also at the Beijing show, BYD unveiled a new PHEV called the Qin (pronounced “Chin”). The “dual-mode electric vehicle” features a 110-kW electric motor and a 1.5-liter turbo gas engine that crank out 223 kW of power and 440 Nm of torque. All-electric range is 50 km (31 miles), and top speed is 185 km/h (115mph). The Qin is equipped with the BYD “i” cloud system telematics platform.

 

Images: Daimler & BYD