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.
The pickup-truck segment in the U.S. market is somewhat like the vehicles themselves: big.
The Tesla Model 3 is certainly one of the most controversial cars to be launched in some time, with production models (a comparative handful, admittedly) presented on a stage with a throng of people treating it like it was an event with Beyoncé, Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran, all at the same time.
A young(ish) guy that I’ve known for a number of years, a man who spent the better part of his career writing for auto buff books and who is a car racer on the side, mentioned to me that his wife has a used Lexus ES Hybrid.