Driving The BYD Atto 3 On A Hot Chennai Day

T Murrali
05 Jun 2023
10:02 AM
2 Min Read

The electric SUV makes for a great experience thanks to its smart features and a slew of technologies, including Blade battery, 8-in-1 high-efficiency electric powertrain and a wide temperature range heat pump system.

BYD Atto 3

When BYD India offered this writer an opportunity to drive its Atto 3 during the weekend to commemorate World Environment Day that followed on Monday, June 5, the timing could not have been more appropriate. 

BYD is of course the world’s leading electric carmaker which has been making the news in recent months for toppling Tesla from the Numero Uno slot. In fact, it is tipped to end up being the largest seller for 2023 in China’s automobile arena. In India, the company is on overdrive with its retail expansion and clearly the Chinese connection means little to customers who see it as a top selling electric car brand.

So, here I was with the Atto 3 on a sweltering Chennai morning. The summer has been particularly harsh this year with the El Nino effect leading to above-normal temperatures since May 2. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the surface temperature in the ocean increases during the period and this pretty much ensures very hot days. 

With this cauldron-like backdrop, I set out for a drive with the family in the Atto 3 towards Tada, about 90 km north of Chennai. There was no question that the SUV was perfect in terms of drivability, swift acceleration and, more importantly, giving a sense of safety to the occupants. 

Of course, the Sun continued its relentless heat during the drive as the Atto 3 cruised without any hiccups towards Tada. While the outside ‘feels like’ temperature was 46 degrees, the drive was comfortable at both slow speeds and above 150 kmph. 

Built on BYD’s all-electric e-platform 3.0, the Atto 3 is fitted with the Blade battery, 8-in-1 high-efficiency electric powertrain and a wide temperature range heat pump system which manages the motor, battery cooler and the HVAC.

The 60.48 kWh Blade battery powers the SUV from 0-100 kmph in 7.3 seconds. The battery features singular cells arranged together in an array and inserted into a battery pack. It is said to be one of the safest batteries for EVs. 

The electric powertrain comprises the drive motor, motor controller, reducer, onboard charger, DC converter, high voltage distribution box, vehicle controller and battery management system. All this help the Atto 3 zip past quickly while the smart features charge the battery at every possible moment through regenerative braking technology. 

It was good to see from the cockpit display that there was no energy lost during braking or while driving down the slope. The powertrain architecture results in 20% reduction in size and 15% in weight translating into overall efficiency of over 89%. 

There are other features to infuse more happiness in the drive like the DiPilot ADAS system which offers a host of assist systems like automatic emergency braking, lane keep assist, adaptive cruise control, blind spot detection, door open warning, lane departure warning/prevention etc. 

BYD is clearly out to make a statement on providing a secondary energy-driven transportation system to support the environment. It has sold over 4.1 million new energy vehicles globally (till May 11) while contributing to reduction of 34 million tonnes of carbon emissions, according to a communique from the company. BYD India, in its turn, states that it has reduced 118,046 tonnes of CO2 emissions through its vehicles, electric forklifts, electric trucks, and electric buses. 

Also Read:

BYD Atto 3: Much More Than Meets The Eye

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