BYD planning Model-3-like 800-volt sedan called Seal
BYD is apparently planning an electric sedan called Seal based on the company’s 800-volt platform to compete with the Tesla Model 3. According to Chinese media, the BYD Seal could be unveiled at the Beijing Auto Show in April.
The electric car is to be BYD’s second production model after the Dolphin based on the electric car platform called e-platform 3.0. The first key data have already been leaked, along with prototype pictures that reveal similarities to the Ocean-X concept car presented last year.
The information and prototype pictures go back to the Chinese news site Xchuxing, but were picked up by English-language news sites such as CN EV Post. According to the data published there, the BYD Seal will be 4.77 metres long, which is around eight centimetres more than a Model 3. The deviations in width and height are even smaller. With a wheelbase of 2.90 metres, the Seal would be on a par with a Kia EV6 and thus 2.5 centimetres above the Model 3. This would position the Seal slightly below BYD’s flagship sedan Han (4.98 metres long).
According to the information, there will apparently be three variants of the sedan; in the approval data published by Xchuxing, these are referred to as EKEA, EKEB and EKEC. The first two versions probably have an engine that produces 150 and 180 kW respectively. The EKEC is apparently the powerful all-wheel-drive version, with 200+160 kW specified there. Whether a system output of 360 kW can be derived from this is still an open question since no details are given about the battery in the document.
The Dolphin compact car, which also uses BYD’s platform 3.0, relies on BYD’s own Blade battery, an LFP battery with very large cells that are installed directly in the battery pack without an intermediate step via the modules. The Blade battery was revealed in 2020 and updated the information in 2021. However, the two battery variants of 30.7 and 44.9 kWh are likely to be designed more for the compact car, while larger batteries are expected in the Seal.
Prices are expected to be in the range of 220,000 to 28,000 yuan (30,570-38,900 euros). The Model 3 will be sold in China at prices between 265,652 and 339,900 yuan (36,900-47,200 euros).
The body of the prototypes looks relatively simple and does without too many design lines from what can be seen under the camouflage. The front is relatively flat to reduce air resistance. The aerodynamically curved roof flows into a short boot lid. Since the rims are also camouflaged, it is possible that BYD is focusing on an independent design here, possibly also with aerodynamic benefits – overall, airflow seems to have played an important role in the design.