BYD Dolphin is officially Australia’s cheapest EV

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BYD Dolphin is priced from $38,890 in Australia, but specifications are yet to be confirmed.

Priced at $38,890 plus on-road costs, the 2023 BYD Dolphin takes the title of Australia’s most affordable electric vehicle, edging out the MG4 Excite 51kWh by a mere $100.

Chinese manufacturer BYD will bolster its Australian line-up with the new small electric Dolphin when it goes on sale tonight, which is when further details will be revealed.

The price confirms that BYD offers the cheapest electric car in Australia, which we’ve already driven.

Details for Australian models are yet to be confirmed, but right-hand drive production vehicles for the UK and New Zealand reveal details that have so far been lacking.

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Based on the same E-Platform 3.0 as the BYD Atto 3 hatchback launched here last year, the electric-only Dolphin can be equipped with a 60kWh lithium-iron phosphate (LFP) ‘Blade’ battery capable of delivering an official combined WLTP range of up to 426km. Power is sent to the front-wheels via a 150kW electric motor that’s good for a 0-100km/h time of 7.1sec. Rapid charging rates peak at 88kW.

Australian prices are yet to be confirmed, but the Dolphin will be very competitively priced. A smaller-battery version of the Dolphin will be available, and while specifics haven’t been confirmed it’s probable that it will use the 44kWh pack already used in the Chinese market version of the Dolphin.

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The interior of the Dolphin is a more conventional-looking affair than the wildly styled interior of the Atto 3, but the Dolphin still gets some aquatic-themed details including what one company source describes as “dolphin-shaped interior door handles that will bring a joyful twist”.

The Dolphin will be offered in four trim levels and with a variety of different finishes. A rotating, 12.3-inch touchscreen interface is standard across the range, as is a heat pump. There will be a wide range of exterior finishes to choose from, including optional dual-tone paint and a panoramic glass roof, in keeping with the brand’s efforts to pitch itself as a semi-premium offering on a par with the likes of Kia and Hyundai.

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A comparably spacious three-person rear bench and a 345-litre boot also make the BYD Dolphin an interesting small family car option.

As with the BYD Atto 3, the Dolphin will be sold in Australia through its distributor EVDirect.

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