What's the more outrageous claim: the full-electric BYD E6 MAV will go on sale in the United States this year; it'll easily pass U.S. crash regulations; or, BYD will be the world's largest automaker by 2025?
All of these claims were made at this year's BYD press conference — a professionally produced and well managed affair. Of course, you can't make claims like taking over the automotive world when you're letting a blog with a silly name driving around the show floor.
The serious assembled automotive journalists had to repeatedly ask BYD's Paul Lin (aka the translator on our infamous drive) if he was serious, if by 2010 he meant this year, if it would pass safety regulations, how would they distribute it, was he really really serious, and how they would distribute power. His answers were" yes, yes, not a problem, not a problem, yes, third-party partner.
The great thing about making such an outrageous claim is people forget the other ones you make, such as being the world's largest automaker by 2025. Our skepticism meter is measuring a "hiking the Appalachian trail" but, to give the slightest bit of credit to BYD, they've grown from making no cars in 2001 to being the fourth largest Chinese automaker in sales and production in less than ten years with 160% growth last year.
So amid the laughs and jokes about their Parker Lewis-esque level of calm in the face of history we still have a glimmer of belief that the richest man in China, BYD founder Wang Chaunfu, at least has a plan to build more than dreams.