The BYD Ute is the second highly anticipated EV form the emerging Chinese giant. This time it’s a dual cab ute that still didn’t have an announced name as this article was published.
Like the Seal U, the ute will first come to Australia as a plug-in hybrid in late 2024, before the EV arrives about 12 months later.
An example of the PHEV is already on-shore in Australia. It is undergoing testing by a local engineering team, with the aim of maximising key ute attributes that Australian ute buyers appreciate, including a competitive payload and braked towing capacity.
Combining a 1.5-litre turbo-petrol engine with dual e-motors, the ute is claimed to be good for 100km of pure electric running, and as much as 1000km when both battery and fuel tank are full.
Again, pricing is an unknown, but the local importer is talking a big game, promising to undercut the established heavyweights such as the Toyota HiLux and Ford Ranger.
Jeeps are big, bruising, macho 4x4s designed to get you way out beyond the city, right? Well, for its first EV, the American off-road brand has gone in a completely different direction.
Due in Australia in the second half of 2024, the Jeep Avenger is a small compact SUV about the same size as a Mazda CX-3, and it comes powered by a single e-motor that drives the front wheels. So no rock-hopping here, the Jeep Avenger is much more about conquering urban challenges like gridlock and crowded carparks.
Much is yet to be unveiled, including pricing, but we do know Jeep is claiming a range around 400km for the Avenger, and an ability to DC fast charge at a rate up to 100kW.
Hyundai Kona EV
The second generation of the popular Hyundai Kona Electric compact SUV will be in showrooms around late November. It will add to a comprehensive Kona line-up that already includes petrol-powered models, and will soon add a hybrid.
This time around, Hyundai developed the Kona to be an EV, and then adapted the platform for the internal combustion drivetrains. That’s a reverse of the usual practice, and should make the Hyundai Kona Electric a better car.
It will also be more expensive if substantial price rises for the petrol Hyundai Kona is any guide. But you’re certainly getting extra real estate for that money, as the Hyundai Kona grows to become a bonafide family car.
While much remains unconfirmed, we do know there will be two powertrains and two battery choices, with the larger one offering about 500km of claimed range between recharges.