Byton, a Chinese electric vehicle start-up firm announced the arrival of its first flagship at the consumer electronics exhibition in Las Vegas. The electric powered concept car has received a lot of hype and is said to be a ‘computer on wheels’. It even has a ‘digital lounge so to speak featuring a panoramic display that acts as the hub for navigation and even monitors the vital signs of the occupants.
Tesla being given a run for its Money in China
Byton as a start-up is quite interesting as it is led by executives from Apple, Tesla, Apple as well as, Google. This all-star team has equal strength as concerns backers including Tencent. The name was chosen to imply, ‘bytes on wheels’. As such, it is one of the latest entrants to the race toward the ultimate autonomous electric car. According to Daniel Kichert, the new concept car was a product that was tailor-made for the future that would be adapted for autonomous driving.
Electric cars backed by Chinese firms have been a part of the CES line-up for the past few years. However, in spite of the country’s years use of incentives and regulation to inspire EV brands, none of the offerings have actually made it into mass production.
Reports suggest this one could go quite differently though. Beyond the buzz is a reasonable EV which Byton is issuing a $45,000 price tag. Considering the unit is an SUV, this will excite those in the market who do not want to wait for the Tesla Model 3 or want electric SUV and do not want to spend more on the I-Pace.
Byton is not the only one opposing the alleged superiority of Tesla in the Asian market. Another electric vehicle start-up known as Nio is also gearing up to aggressively compete for a share of the lucrative Chinese market. The number of potential customers in this market has made it increasingly hard to ignore by the western hemisphere. Although, companies like Nio enjoy an edge over others considering they have the backing of the government.
The Chief Financial Officer of the Chinese start-up, Louis Hsieh, claimed Tesla had been seeking subsidies or relief on the tariffs from the Chinese though the prediction was they would not succeed. Probably Byton would be able to succeed in its place considering it is a step ahead and is in the right space to do so.
Byton SUV Features
According to Autocar magazine, the concept car out of Byton is being positioned for the market as a premium SUV model. It will be available with interior tech including a touchscreen control panel that will take up the entire dash along with personalization options. It will have level 3 driveless systems which means the vehicle will be able to monitor other objects on the road while reacting to situations absent of intervention from the driver. It also carries needed equipment for a level of autonomy which takes care of braking, steering, and indicating.
The Byton SUV is going to utilize facial recognition for driver access and it will allow for interaction via voice control systems courtesy of Alexa, not forgetting touch and gesturing. To top it off, 5G connectivity is available to improve its functions consistent with the operating artificial intelligence. Byton is to put the electric SUV on the road by 2019 with sales starting in China, the same year. it plans for entry to the American market the following year.