On September 15, Weibo user “Penghao Liu Haopeng” exposed two road test spy photos of a new BYD sports car. According to the photographer, the photos were taken in a BYD industrial park. The vehicle was tightly wrapped with camouflage stickers while compared to the BYD Qin that appears next to the new model, this vehicle appears to be a lot closer to the ground.
The spy photos sparked speculation that the new car might belong to the upcoming “million-yuan-range high-end car brand”. However, some bloggers said that BYD’s sports car model should still be going through its production phase at this time. No one knows for sure.
BYD is the “king” of the Chinese new energy vehicle market. In August, its sales volume of 174,000 accounted for about 30% of the total market in the month.
In February last year, BYD confirmed its plan to launch a high-end brand for the first time when it adjusted the organizational structure of the company’s automobile business. According to the original plan, the high-end brand built by BYD will be officially launched between 2022 and 2023, and the first model is expected to be officially unveiled in 2022, with a price falling in the range of 500,000 to 800,000 yuan.
On August 25, a spokesperson for the company told domestic media that the “high-end BYD brand is currently scheduled to be released at the end of this year, and the first hard-drive cross-country model will be unveiled simultaneously, with a price of more than 1 million yuan.” The new brand will be a new energy vehicle with a new and independent team for branding, production, sales and operation. As for the name, it is currently going under the moniker “Xingkong,” meaning “starry sky.”
National Business Daily reported that BYD’s high-end brand can enhance the company’s corporate image and improve its strength, said Ren Wanfu, an auto industry analyst. “It is not an overnight effort for car companies to build high-end brands. Technology, products, marketing and services, all needs to match brand positioning.”
In recent years, BYD has been exploring high-end vehicle market. In addition to planning new high-end brand, the firm acquired 90% equity of Denza, a joint venture company between Mercedes-Benz Group and BYD, through equity transfer, at the end of last year, gaining the leading position in the strategic development plan of Denza. On August 23, Denza D9, the first high-end new energy MPV model under Denza, was officially launched with a price between 329,800 yuan to 660,000 yuan.