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Still think cheap EVs are boring? "Tuned" BYD Dolphin Sport will be faster than most hot hatches as full electric vehicle range detailed

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The three-range BYD family will include a go-fast Sport variant
The three-range BYD family will include a go-fast Sport variant

The BYD Dolphin will arrive in Australia in three trim levels, with one of those being the country's cheapest EV, and another being a hot-hatch rivalling Sport model.

The Chinese brand seems determined to tackle the broadest range of EV buyers possible, from those looking for something cheap and cheerful – though still impressively equipped – to those drivers seeking a little fun behind the wheel.

The Dolphin story will begin with the entry level Dynamic, which, at $38,890, is the country's cheapest EV, undercutting the MG4 by just $100.

So cheap, sure. But also seriously stacked with goodies. Expect 16-inch alloy wheels, a panoramic sunroof and smart key entry outside, while in the cabin there's heated front seats, a big 12.8-inch multimedia screen with Apple CarPlay and standard sat-nav.

Under the skin, there's a front-mounted 70kW and 180Nm electric motor, which pairs with a 44.9kWh battery, the former delivering a 12.3-second sprint to 100km/h, and the latter providing 340kms in driving range.

The Dolphin then steps up to the Premium trim, which lists at $48,890. Yes, that's another $6k, but it also delivers more power and more range than the Dynamic model.

This time the battery is 60.48kWh, upping the range to 427km, while the bigger 150kW and 310Nm motor drops the sprint to 100km/h to seven seconds flat. The wheels are also upgraded, now 17-inch alloys.

Finally, BYD importer has promised 1000 examples of the Dolphin Sport will arrive in Australia next year, delivering the most pulse-quickening drive experience ever offered by BYD here.

BYD Dolphin Sport Interior
BYD Dolphin Sport Interior

Details are thin on the ground, but – as you can see from BYD's artist impression above – the Dolphin Sport will be an aggressive looking EV beast, inside and out.

BYD says the Sport will be a “tuned vehicle” that will sprint to 100km/h in less than seven seconds, though exactly how much faster it will be, and how much power it might produce, is yet to be confirmed.

The Sport model lists at $49,990, will be offered only in matt grey paint, and will be fitted 17-inch alloys. If the image is any guide, it will also feature aggressive body styling and full body skirting.

The Sport will launch in 2024, while the two cheaper models should begin arriving in September.

Andrew Chesterton
Contributing Journalist
Andrew Chesterton should probably hate cars. From his hail-damaged Camira that looked like it had spent a hard life parked at the end of Tiger Woods' personal driving range, to the Nissan Pulsar Reebok that shook like it was possessed by a particularly mean-spirited demon every time he dared push past 40km/h, his personal car history isn't exactly littered with gold. But that seemingly endless procession of rust-savaged hate machines taught him something even more important; that cars are more than a collection of nuts, bolts and petrol. They're your ticket to freedom, a way to unlock incredible experiences, rolling invitations to incredible adventures. They have soul. And so, somehow, the car bug still bit. And it bit hard. When "Chesto" started his journalism career with News Ltd's Sunday and Daily Telegraph newspapers, he covered just about everything, from business to real estate, courts to crime, before settling into state political reporting at NSW Parliament House. But the automotive world's siren song soon sounded again, and he begged anyone who would listen for the opportunity to write about cars. Eventually they listened, and his career since has seen him filing car news, reviews and features for TopGear, Wheels, Motor and, of course, CarsGuide, as well as many, many others. More than a decade later, and the car bug is yet to relinquish its toothy grip. And if you ask Chesto, he thinks it never will.
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