BYD Seagull cheap EV?; Qin Plus DM-i?

It hasn’t hit the U.S. market yet, but starting at about $10000 in China, and a little more elsewhere, for an EV with 190 or 252 mile range, the Seagull might be competitive with the massively overpriced EVs that currently sell on the U.S. market.

Likewise the BYD Qin Plus DM-i, starting at about $11000 in China, is a hybrid, far below the price of any hybrid we can buy in the U.S. (A basic Versa is only a little more, but it’s not a hybrid.)

But various reviews speculate they would be more expensive to meet U.S. standards - but they differ a lot on how much more expensive.

Can anyone here give a better guess?

And what cost to maintain? Can BYD vehicles be maintained by most mechanics, and is there any news about how they would create a dealer network in the U.S. to handle warranty repairs?

If it is like most things made in China, it will turn to crap very soon after buying it… A BIG NO thank you…


It will be more costly in the US… shipping cost for one, and US safety standards plus emission standards for the hybrid. And I do not believe the prices you list are actually the price converted to USD.

The Vietnamese VinFast beat BYD to the US market and was declared the worst car any on the reviewers had ever driven. So take that as a likely commentary on the Quin Plus and Seagull.

And then you have the sinking market for EVs in the US…


Not that I’ve seen.


Every EV-only company is having problems right now, the last thing I would do is buy from a new company in the US market, who knows how long they will be here.

Friend bought a Tesla Y a few months ago, is not liking the charging requirements when he takes it out of town.

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The current administration says that they will put significant tariffs on Chinese EV imports. They do cost much less to manufacture and ship to the US. Transportation costs from Asian and European manufacturers don’t seem to inhibit the market much.

In response, BYD wants to build an assembly plant in Mexico. I don’t think that the US Government could put tariffs on BYD cars built in Mexico without trashing the USMCA and I doubt that would happen. Chinese EV imports won’t make it here until the European market is saturated, and that will take several years. A lot can change during the coming years.

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That’s not universal. E.g. Hisense has been coming out with some very high end TVs.

People used to say the same thing about stuff made in Japan. Then companies like Honda and Toyota hit the market, and some people felt they were better made than The U.S. Big Three.

But I don’t know anything about BYD. AFAIK, Honda & Toyota didn’t target the low price end, but I might be wrong. Oddly, Tesla has usd BYD Blade EV batteries in some of its cars, though not, AFAICT, in the U.S. market. And BYD seems to be a pretty big company.

Personally, I am still sometimes driving too far for an all-electric. A well-designed hybrid might fit the bill. Though these two are too small for me, and they don’t have AWD or 4WD.

I found a quote that suggests BYD doesn’t nominally plan to come to the U.S. Oh well:

So - unless this changes - never mind.

Why should they go somewhere that they aren’t wanted and will be actively suppressed when they can go to a more welcoming market like Europe or India? It might happen eventually but the politics of both major political parties is very unfavorable for Chinese EVs in the US at this time.

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I think I’ve seen them advertised for around $11,000 (US dollars) new, in the Asian market. It would be interesting for them to provide an estimate of the cost if sold in the USA, presuming there are add’l functions they’d have to include to sell them here. The price for each function would be interesting too. For example if they had to add $1500 to the price for tire pressure display function, folks here in the USA would at least have an estimate how much that function is costing them for a new car.

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I think that the cost of making their vehicles comply with US safety regulations–coupled with the US’s protective tariff designed to keep Chinese vehicles out of the US marketplace–would increase the price of BYD and other Chinese-made vehicles to the point where their price was not competitive.

If this Chinese-made EV is an example of the “safety” of vehicles from that country, I think that it would potentially add a LOT to the cost of their vehicles if they had to comply with US safety standards:

Maybe many of the ones built in Mexico will export to Canada, or elsewhere in the Americas?

Does Canada have less stringent safety requirements?

And it is always possible that US administrations and policies could change. That sort of thing happens once in a while.

Not when they first hit the market. Took them years to make a reliable vehicle.

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My brother’s first wife decided to buy a Datsun SPL-310 without consulting him, or me, or anyone who might have had more insight into things of an automotive nature. That particular imitation of an MG was so rife with defects–both desisgn defects and assembly defects–that it was the worst production car that I ever experienced.

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