BYD e6 Electric MPV

 Build Your Dreams (BYD) is an electric vehicle manufacturer (among a long list of other things) that has launched the e6 electric MPV for business-to-business (B2B) customers i.e. the e6 will not be available for sale to private car buyers.s



Even so, this car has generated a lot of interest, largely because it promises a real-world range figure of between 415-520km (WLTC Combined-City). At the outset, we must make it clear that this is primarily an electric mobility solution and not something that’ll offer a lot of features or amenities for its asking price of Rs 29.15-29.60 lakh (ex-showroom). We drove it from Chennai to Pondicherry to see how efficient it can be in our real-world test cycle and if this is a viable solution for fleet customers.


The e6 may be for a customer focused on functionality(even in the markets where it is sold overseas) but that hasn’t stopped BYD from designing a good looking car. Especially in this blue and black two-tone paint scheme, the e6 grabs attention without having to resort to any over-the-top styling cues. There’s a light use of chrome around the fascia, windowline and tail gate and no excessive use of cuts, creases or character lines, giving it a clean and European look. 


On the size front, the Innova Crysta is only slightly longer and wider but it is much taller. However, the e6’s 2800mm wheelbase is larger than the Toyota’s. BYD offers two variants - GL and GLX. Irrespective of the version you get, the e6 sports halogen projector headlights (for the low beam), LED DRLs, 17-inch alloy wheels and indicators on the wing mirrors. 

Like the outside, the e6’s interior styling is also tasteful and clean. The dashboard is largely button-free as a lot of the functions are controlled by the free-standing touchscreen. The seats get draped in black leatherette upholstery, there are piano black accents on the doors and a chunky faux blackwood finish on the dashboard. While this makes the cabin look premium, what seals the deal is the build and finish quality.


There’s a great sense of heft to the doors, the plastic trim feels robust with a very smooth finish and there’s good attention to detail, with leatherette upholstery applied to the centre console and even the roof liner uses good quality cloth.


There is one big catch to this MPV, and that is the seating configuration. While it does have a longer wheelbase than the Innova Crysta, the e6 only seats five. So it won’t accommodate more people than a premium hatchback or sedan. Here are the cabin’s key highlights:


 Ingress/egress is very convenient as the floor height isn’t too high. Even senior citizens are unlikely to need a side step


The windowline isn’t too high, the glass area is generous and the rear row is placed higher than the front, so passengers have a good sense of space and a nice view out.

 The kneeroom and headroom are generous. Users around or even slightly above six feet in height can sit comfortably behind one another with space to spare. 


It’s a good five-seater. The cabin width has been put to good use and three passengers of an average build can comfortably fit into the rear seat. The floor is flat too.


 The rear seat is close to the floor, so you sit a little knees-up. As a result, underthigh support isn’t great, even for those who aren’t particularly tall.


 You don’t get much by way of amenities - no rear armrest, no rear sunshade, no adjustment of any kind for the rear seat and no blower speed control for the single, floor-mounted rear AC vent either. You do get two USB chargers underneath the AC vent, though.


The 580-litre boot is perfectly shaped to accommodate multiple large suitcases, so there’s enough storage space for intercity trips or airport runs. Travel agencies aside, this will be a good option for hotel chains. There’s a steel-rim spare tyre underneath the boot floor as well (space-saver). Unfortunately, the rear seat doesn’t fold to liberate more room, should you need it.


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