| 4:44 PM EST

Byton Gets Okay for Direct EV Sales in Calif.

Hong Kong-based electric car startup Byton Ltd. says it has been licensed to sell or lease cars directly to consumers in California.
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Hong Kong-based electric car startup Byton Ltd. says it has been licensed to sell or lease cars directly to consumers in California.

The license applies to the company’s new U.S. retail unit, Byton Cars California LLC and includes a distributor license for a North American distribution unit called Byton Americas LLC. Byton and its subsidiaries are part of China’s Future Mobility Corp.

Byton also intends to market cars online to customers in other states under what it describes as a new retail model for U.S. vehicle sales.

The company unveiled a production version of its first model, the M-Byte luxury crossover (pictured), in September. The car is expected to go on sale in China next summer and in Europe and the U.S. in 2021.

Byton says the M-Byte will be offered with a choice between two powertrains. The base model will be propelled by a 268-hp electric motor and 72-kWh battery that provides a range of about 220 miles.

An all-wheel-drive powertrain adds a second motor to boost power to 402 hp. Buyers also can select a 95-kWh battery that would hike the car’s range to nearly 300 miles.

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