It looks like a Land Rover, is as fast as a Ferrari, and can travel on water like a boat – but the YangWang U8 is the latest luxury SUV from China’s BYD.
BYD has shown off a new luxury electric SUV with Land Rover looks and Ferrari performance – but it won’t be offered in Australia.
Launched as the first model from BYD’s sub-brand YangWang, the U8 SUV uses four electric motors to produce a total of 820kW, sending the SUV to 100km/h from a standstill in a claimed 3.0 seconds – making it one of the world’s quickest-accelerating heavy-duty ladder-frame vehicle to date.
Despite its supercar performance, the YangWang U8 is designed as an off-road vehicle, but perhaps its most outlandish claim is that the vehicle is amphibious.
Thanks to body sealing and IP68-grade waterproofing on the electric motors, BYD says its new SUV can float. A video released overnight showed a camouflaged prototype U8 traversing a lake.
Thanks to the quad motors, the U8 is also capable of ‘tank turns’ – spinning 360 degrees on its own axis – as well as moving diagonally, like a GMC Hummer EV.
The company didn’t release images of the vehicle’s interior, but at an estimated ¥1 million ($AU215,000) in its native China, the YangWang U8 is priced in the luxury class.
However, it is not planned for Australia, as the YangWang brand’s vehicles are focused on the Chinese market with no right-hand-drive versions available – for the time being.
Luke Todd, managing director of BYD’s Australian distributor EVDirect, told Drive: “At this stage, YangWang is for the Chinese market in [left-hand drive] and there are no immediate plans to bring to Australia.”