The Atto 3 is priced significantly lower than other EVs in the UAE, making it by far the most accessible electric model available in the UAE through official dealers.
(Image credit: BYD)
BYD (OTCMKTS: BYDDY) has entered the UAE passenger car market to expand its presence in the Middle East further after having previously entered Israel and Jordan.
On June 21, BYD launched the Atto 3 in the UAE with its local partner Al-Futtaim Electric Mobility Company. The model, known as the Yuan Plus in China, is the first global model from the new energy vehicle (NEV) maker.
This revolutionary vehicle marks a significant milestone in the UAE's journey towards sustainable mobility and reinforces both BYD and Al-Futtaim's commitment to contributing towards the UAE's Net-Zero 2050 strategic goals, BYD said in a press release.
The Atto 3 is priced at Dh149,900 ($40,810) in the UAE, below the Dh150,000 mark.
The pricing makes it by far the most accessible EV model available in the UAE through an official dealership, said Gulf News, an English-language UAE media outlet.
Other EVs are priced closer to Dh200,000 and higher, leaving a fairly open field for BYD to build scale in this market, Gulf News said.
BYD officially launched the Yuan Plus in China on February 19, 2022, and opens pre-orders for the model in Australia on the same day under the Atto 3 name.
The model is currently offered in five versions in China with a price range of RMB 139,800 ($19,470) to RMB 167,800.
Prior to the official launch of the Atto 3 in the UAE, more than 95,000 online visitors viewed the model, with more than 3,000 registered leads and 153 bookings, said Al-Futtaim managing director Hasan Nergiz, according to Gulf News.
"What people don't understand that much is that BYD is already the No. 1 EV manufacturer in the world and outsells Tesla. Atto 3 is the model that we will deploy to build a presence in the UAE and then will come the other models," Nergiz said.
The Atto 3 is BYD's first A-class SUV based on e-Platform 3.0, with a 0-100 km/h acceleration time of 7.3 seconds and a maximum range of 420 km WLTP.
BYD considered the needs and preferences of its UAE customers, and the model passed product localization and high-temperature testing, it said.
"We understand the importance of product localization for the UAE market with its unique climate and hot weather," said AD Huang, general manager of BYD Middle East & Africa.
"Last year, we conducted extensive hot weather testing to ensure the BYD Atto 3 performs optimally even in the region's challenging climate and hot summers. Over the course of several months, we drove more than 100,000 kilometers across the UAE in order to optimize the vehicle's performance and ensure that our customers receive the best driving experience possible with the BYD Atto 3," he said.
Currently, EV sales account for less than 5 percent of new car sales in the UAE, and that number is skewed toward fleet sales rather than retail buyers, the Gulf News report said, adding that that could change as people in their 20s or 30s become early adopters of EVs.
BYD will next launch its flagship Han sedan in the UAE, for which pre-orders are open on the BYD UAE website and will actually launch in October.
The UAE is the latest Middle East market BYD has entered, with the NEV maker announcing its entry into the Israeli passenger car market last August and launching four models -- Dolphin, Tang EV, Atto 3 and Han EV -- in Jordan on March 9.
BYD sold 240,220 NEVs in May, up 108.99 percent from 114,943 units in the same month last year and up 14.23 percent from 210,295 units in April, according to data released earlier this month.
In May, BYD sold 10,203 NEVs in overseas markets, down 31.19 percent from 14,827 units in April.
($1 = Dh3.6731, $1 = RMB 7.1795)