Home » BYD’s New Pickup Wants a Piece of the Truck Market, And It Looks Good

BYD’s New Pickup Wants a Piece of the Truck Market, And It Looks Good

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Trucks are big business. The transition to hybrid and electric models has shaken up the space, giving new players the chance to forge a beachhead in a formerly stable market. BYD is among them, with the Chinese automaker planning to launch its own pickup later this year.

It’s still early days, and BYD is playing its cards close to its chest. The shots of the truck are heavily camouflaged, so we only get a rough sense of shape and dimension. Still, credit to the Chinese automaker is due—the orange and blue design is incredibly striking. It reminds one of the great sticker packs of the 1990s.

Vidframe Min Top
Vidframe Min Bottom

Despite this, the pictures still give us good insight into what BYD has planned. It’s a conventional-looking truck, for a start. BYD isn’t doing a Tesla; it’s decided that customers want a regular truck that’s electrified, not some weird pointy pill from the future. The design also features a nice sail pillar that gives it a rugged, sporty look, and what looks like chunky cladding on the fenders and doors.

There’s no name yet, with BYD likely to continue its trend of picking different monikers to suit different markets. Word on the street is that it’s a proper body-on-frame truck. It’s been reported to have both pure EV and hybridversions; it seems likely at this point that BYD will sell the truck with a variety of drivetrain options. CarNewsChina claims the vehicle is a plug-in hybrid with over 621 miles (1000 km) of range, while US outlets have primarily reported it as an EV pickup. The Autopian has contacted BYD to see if we can get any juicy details on exactly what powertrain options are coming down the line.

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Size-wise, BYD is aiming at the mid-to-large segment. Early reports from CarNews China last year indicated the model could be around three feet shorter than a contemporary Ford F-150.  Overall, the truck is expected to be larger than the current Toyota Hilux.

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If that reference seems a little foreign to you, it’s because BYD probably isn’t bringing the truck to the United States. The brand will instead be selling the truck at home in China and in other export markets. Australia, South Africa, and Thailand could all be big markets for the new model.

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It’s worth noting while pickups are beloved do-everything vehicles in the West, that’s not really the case in China. In BYD’s home country, pickups were often banned from city centers until recently. Additionally, being classified as light trucks, they were subject to more restrictive regulations than many passenger vehicles. That’s the opposite to how Western countries often treat such vehicles. Restrictions on pickups have been eased in recent years, though, and it’s believable that China could come to love the pickup, too.

Unlike some Chinese brands, BYD is doing well at design. Earlier uncamouflaged shots of the BYD pickup show that it has good proportions and styling. In particular, the big BYD badge on the front grille is just right. A lot of Chinese brands make their badges garish and far too late, but BYD nailed it in this case. It’s very reminiscent of how Ford does it on the F-150 Raptor, for example. The influence of ex-BMW designer Wolfgang Egger surely helped in this regard.

Radar 3
China is starting to go for pickups. The Geely Radar RD6 is already winning fans, and could be a prime rival for the BYD effort in its home market.

Overall, I’m cautiously eager to see what BYD delivers in this space. While still an unfamiliar company on the global stage, BYD is regularly in contention for being the biggest EV manufacturer in the world. That industrial might could help it build a solid EV pickup at an affordable price. When that happens, put my name on the waiting list, and option the 90s sticker pack, too. I’ll be ready.

Image credits: BYD, Geely

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67 Oldsmobile
67 Oldsmobile
3 months ago

I am sorry Lewin,but this is a shit article. I would think The Autopian had an higher standard than uncritically promoting what is essentially a Chinese rip-off of someone else’s intellectual property without getting into the issues of Chinese business culture and the values they stand for.
Please be better,sometimes content should not be made for the sake of just producing clicks and traffic.

67 Oldsmobile
67 Oldsmobile
3 months ago
Reply to  Lewin Day

Sorry for the tone,nothing personal towards you really. I just feel that you could be a bit more critical in the article regarding the design of this truck, that to me,seems quite obviously like a rip-off of the Ford Lightning. I think that maybe could have been mentioned in your article, but then again,maybe you don’t see it that way.

Utherjorge
Utherjorge
3 months ago

I don’t really understand Mr. Day’s function and purpose here at Autopian.

Let’s start by saying that I’m nobody. I’m not important. I don’t run this site, I don’t know page traffic, etc. But this is happening a lot with his/her/their stuff, and it doesn’t make sense.

I’m also buoyed that others here see the same thing, as per comments already posted.

It started with the blatant homerism displayed for Tesla engineering. The articles about the utter disaster with the Cybertruck are everywhere now, at other sites, MSM, and yep, as another site showed, just check the owners’ message boards. Unmitigated disaster, and unquestionably not good engineering…even if parts of the whole could amount to such.

But this article is like “Day’s Tesla CT article says hold my beer” levels. Let’s start with this quote:
Still, credit to the Chinese automaker is due—the orange and blue design is incredibly striking.” You’re crediting the camo that is applied to the vehicle? As an example of why, as per the title, it “looks good”? OK. Camo looks good. Got it. Highly useless, but ok.

This quote is fun:
“BYD isn’t doing a Tesla; it’s decided that customers want a regular truck that’s electrified, not some weird pointy pill from the future.”
So, take back the stuff he said about the CT? OK. But as other commenters have said, BYD absolutely ripped off pieces of multiple vehicles for this design, specifically the F150’s front. And this is what BYD does. And always has. Why is this ignored? There are no big styling leaps here. I mean, David and Torch busted those charatans with the other “CT knockoff” gloriously…so it’s not like you guys don’t know this.

There’s such a missed opportunity with this paragraph:
“If that reference seems a little foreign to you, it’s because BYD probably isn’t bringing the truck to the United States. The brand will instead be selling the truck at home in China and in other export markets. Australia, South Africa, and Thailand could all be big markets for the new model.” Why would these guys not even try to crack into the biggest truck market? Doesn’t that seem odd? It’s like you almost got there.

And then this gem:
“Unlike some Chinese brands, BYD is doing well at design. Earlier uncamouflaged shots of the BYD pickup show that it has good proportions and styling. In particular, the big BYD badge on the front grille is just right. A lot of Chinese brands make their badges garish and far too late, but BYD nailed it in this case. It’s very reminiscent of how Ford does it on the F-150 Raptor, for example.” Oh boy.

So, that’s it. It’s either brilliant satire that might be confused with having a seizure for winking at us so much….or Mr. Day’s up to something.

William Sheldon
William Sheldon
3 months ago

having worked in both the medical and auto industry’s, I can state w/ clarity, confidence and having our designs be blatantly ripped off, that the chinese, as a matter of national policy, are highly skilled at “adopting” the tech and designs of known successes in order to speed up their “industrial revolution” of sorts. At trade/conference shows, look out for people covertly carrying around a camera, sometimes hard plumbed to a laptop for hi-res data storage of video as they systematically scan an entire show/conference for new designs/tech/chemistrys, whatever, which is against all trade show rules, but its done anyways. Many cannot even speak english (what are they doing at english speaking trade shows?), and when you earnestly approach them about what they are looking for, and then why they are clearly defying the rules, they run away like i have the plague (i do not, AFAIK). Its sketchy AF.

With this design language used, im sure years-old internet photos of the F150’s headlights and taillights were enough to get the design process started when the spy photos of the lightning came out. In most western countries, Intellectual Property and trademarks are somewhat sacrosanct, but not in China, they see the stuff out in the world and claim a right to acquire this information as a way to bolster the rise of the country. Its sad to see, b/c the Chinese people i know personally here in the states do not operate that way at all, and are amazing people that most of us could only wish could be our next door neighbor. Certainly would beat the crazy neighbor who drinks too much and threatens the neighborhood’s peace, quiet and sanity. We’ve all had THAT neighbor!

Utherjorge
Utherjorge
3 months ago

all is very well said

Bizness Comma Nunya
Bizness Comma Nunya
3 months ago

It’s not “reminiscent”, it’s a fucking ripoff of the F-150 and the F-150 Lightning.

Fuck BYD, they are a garbage company, and beyond a doubt the most full of shit of all the larger Chinese OEMs/Tier 1s.

BOSdriver
BOSdriver
3 months ago

Did they take the Avalanche that David Tracy reviewed a few weeks ago and slap some vinyl graphics on it?

Swedish Jeep
Swedish Jeep
3 months ago
Reply to  BOSdriver

BYD Avalanche = Chevy Silverado EV

Nick Fortes
Nick Fortes
3 months ago

It doesn’t appear to be sail panels on top of the bed. It looks like a regular roll bar but they have stretched the vinyl camo wrap over it. Can see evidence of that from the rear 3/4 photo.

Robot Turds
Robot Turds
3 months ago

It looks like a ripoff of both an F-150 and a Avalanche.

Greg
Greg
3 months ago

Even the camo they use is better.

when did America get so fucking lame.

Chris D
Chris D
3 months ago

BYD has the same problem as KIA – they don’t know how to make the letters that spell out their name.
What we have here is 3LJ Backwards C.
If their ability to make a truck is on a par with their penmanship, then what we have here is ClusterTruck II.

Grey alien in a beige sedan
Grey alien in a beige sedan
3 months ago

I would totally buy one of these as I have no interest or need in buying a modern cowboy cadillac. Spending $70k on a pickup is just madness. If we could see these stateside for less than $35k, they would sell like hotcakes – except for the rural areas.

Greg
Greg
3 months ago

I live in a rural area, people would love a 35k truck. Wouldn’t matter if it ran off dragon piss. A new truck for 35k works for most. Might be surprised how many farmers and rural folks have solar.

Colin Richardson
Colin Richardson
3 months ago

Why are they calling this a pickup truck, when all I can see is a 4 door passenger car with an uncovered trunk and a bumper/grille designed to annihilate pedestrians?

Last edited 3 months ago by Colin Richardson
TheDrunkenWrench
TheDrunkenWrench
3 months ago

I haven’t seen any body-on-frame passenger cars since the panther platform left us. Unless you’re holding out on me.

Christo Arvanitis
Christo Arvanitis
3 months ago

I wonder how much resistance there would be in the US if this, and more likely, the Geely Radar are sold here. Being Chinese and all. Or does that not matter to most pickup drivers? I sense some significant resistance but I could be wrong. the BYD is butt ugly/bland/comical while the Geely looks much more nuanced IMHO even though the c-pillar and window trim is almost 100% Ridgeline.

DadBod
DadBod
3 months ago

It’ll probably be relegated to the people who are immune to truck bullshit, like Ridgeline buyers. Disclaimer: I am not immune to truck bullshit.

Christo Arvanitis
Christo Arvanitis
3 months ago
Reply to  DadBod

Huh. I’m a Ridgeline owner (it’s built in Alabama) and don’t have a problem buying from a Japanese automaker but I do have resistance to buying a Chinese vehicle even though so many things in my house are from China. I just can’t with a Chinese vehicle for some logical and illogical reasons.

Noahwayout
Noahwayout
3 months ago

I laugh every time I see an American flag emblazoned Tacoma. I’m sure American’s will feign disgust and then buy it in big numbers.

Angrycat Meowmeow
Angrycat Meowmeow
3 months ago

Chevy’s electric pickup is $100k. I don’t think they’d be met with much resistance.

Masterbuilder
Masterbuilder
3 months ago

Why is that bed attached to the frame? What can it accommodate?

I suppose, as an old, I’m bitching at a cloud here, but if a truck has a cargo area shorter than 8 feet it’s for show – not for go.

That bed looks to be about 4 feet long. Who has a use for that?

Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
3 months ago
Reply to  Masterbuilder

As an owner of an 8′ long bed that I made into a 6′ short bed by putting a toolbox in it, short beds are still rather useful. I could use a 4′ bed, and it would be about 50% as useful as an 8′ bed, which is still not bad.

This will be competing against Hiluxes and the like, which are mostly sold with a similar crew cab and similarly short bed. I’m not entirely sure how most of the world gets anything done when their biggest pickups have a 4-5′ bed, but I guess they do.

It’s kind of interesting, because people seem to think that big crew cab short bed pickups with ridiculously high beltlines exist only to serve the ego of the average Texas single dad. But all over the world, pickups are overwhelmingly moving to crew cab short beds with ridiculously high beltlines. The beltline thing in particular is worse on most foreign pickups than US pickups.

V10omous
V10omous
3 months ago
Reply to  Masterbuilder

I have a crew cab 8 foot bed F350 so I suppose I meet with your approval, but the short bed trucks tow just as well as the long beds, which is why lots of people buy them.

TheDrunkenWrench
TheDrunkenWrench
3 months ago
Reply to  Masterbuilder

The rest of the world outside of North America makes due just fine with shorter beds. We’re just obsessed with truck length here. (I’m no better, I bought an F150 crew with the 6.5′ bed specifically because I thought the shortbed was pointless)

DadBod
DadBod
3 months ago

That’s gotta be murderous to park

Last edited 3 months ago by DadBod
TheDrunkenWrench
TheDrunkenWrench
3 months ago
Reply to  DadBod

Not particularly. I’m a truck & coach mechanic so I’m very used to parking/operating large vehicles up here in the great white north.

My return to pickup truck ownership will likely see me in a midsize though, as it suits my needs while still carting the family around. (most of it is towing busted project cars and loading greasy used parts in the bed, the latter being why I don’t like SUVs).

DadBod
DadBod
3 months ago

I dunno, here in New England the parking lots are designed for cars the size of a 1988 Accord. Parking a 5.5 bed crewcab F150 is a bitch even with 360 cameras. You are a true artist if you can slot that beast into space.

Spartanjohn113
Spartanjohn113
3 months ago
Reply to  Masterbuilder

The Maverick’s bed is 4.5′ long and I use it all the time for hauling furniture or outdoor supplies.

Chris D
Chris D
3 months ago
Reply to  Spartanjohn113

Apparently this is designed to compete with the Santa Fe.

My Goat Ate My Homework
My Goat Ate My Homework
3 months ago
Reply to  Masterbuilder

I had an 8ft bed and now have a 5.5 and I’ve never missed the 8ft bed. Even hauling dimensional lumber and plywood is just fine with the tailgate down. The only thing I miss (in a good way) is the inability to park in a garage. An 8ft bed would make that impossible without an extra extra deep garage.

86-GL
86-GL
3 months ago
Reply to  Masterbuilder

Who has use for a short bed… How about people who run their own building companies?

Here are some things my partner and I regularly carry in our 5.5’ Supercrew F150:

-Garbage, recycling and jobsite waste.
-Fuel
-Dirty tools and equipment.
-Outboard motor
-Wheelbarrow
-ATV, snowmobile- yes, a 154” long track utility sled…
-A dozen scaffolding frames
-Bags of insulation

The mythical “sheet of plywood with the bed closed” fantasy is just that- Professionals buy lumber at more than five 2x4s a time, which means the yard delivers to the job site for free.

Even if we had to deliver our own lumber- Over 50% of it is 12ft +,and would be better off loaded by forklift onto a flat-deck trailer.

8ft bed trucks are impractical for most private citizens and small companies, unless you are okay with a truck that doesn’t fit in parking spaces.
The ability to carry 4+ passengers is much, much more useful than the once in a blue moon situation an 8ft bed is ‘essential’. If you truely need more space than a short bed can provide, you’re better off with a trailer or a cargo van.

Viking Longcar
Viking Longcar
3 months ago

That razzle dazzle camo evokes the 90s in delightful ways. The flat hubcaps? Chef’s kiss.

Where’s the matching Trapper-Keeper?

Beekeo
Beekeo
3 months ago
Reply to  Viking Longcar

I believe me and the cameo designer loved the same GI Joe Alley Viper toy as kids

Undecided profile name
Undecided profile name
3 months ago

Why are sail pillars sporty? I’ve never understood that, especially with the hate the 1st gen Ridgeline often gets.

OrigamiSensei
OrigamiSensei
3 months ago

I noted that too, and then realized that what appeared to be sail pillars are not structural, but a wrap on a faux rollbar as seen in the bottom left photo of Tycho’s post with the uncamouflaged trucks. Look at how the wrap is stretched even in the camo photos.

Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
3 months ago

Well, 80s Marty McFly roll bars are cool and sporty. Those “sail pillars” sure look like they’re just a roll bar with a camouflage wrap over it.

Tim Cushing
Tim Cushing
3 months ago

I’d totally shell out for a reasonably priced BYD Zubaz

I_drive_a_truck
I_drive_a_truck
3 months ago

The blue and orange version looks like vomit. The black and white versions make me feel whelmed. It’s a truck and that’s fine.

Paint-Drinking Thundercock Harvey Park
Paint-Drinking Thundercock Harvey Park
3 months ago

Fabulous vomit.

DaFaRo
DaFaRo
3 months ago

Gee, every chinese pick up looks like a F150 knockoff.

Jonathan Hendry
Jonathan Hendry
3 months ago

Before attempting the American market they should rename their truck marque BDE.

Master P
Master P
3 months ago

Biggus Dickus Extraordinaire?

Chris D
Chris D
3 months ago

BYD may mean Bring Your D***, because if you are unfortunate enough to not have one, a Chinese pickup will not make up for your shortcomings.

MATTinMKE
MATTinMKE
3 months ago

Coming to Australia? Looking forward to you & Lawrence getting your hands on one of these and putting it through its paces.

IDM3
IDM3
3 months ago
Reply to  MATTinMKE

From what I’ve seen and heard since last year, Both the BYD and Geely Radar trucks are coming to Australia with the Radar arriving sometime during the second half of the year. It would be interesting to see how they compare to Great Wall’s Canon P-Series.

I’s awaiting word on the possible debuts here in the US. BYD has an assembly plant in California, and Geely may build the Radar in South Korea, which has a tariff-free trade agreement with the US-so, no Chicken Tax BS. Everyone knows Geely is gunning for the Honda Ridgeline, so get ready for the fireworks!

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