Latest in Gear

Image credit: Steve Dent/Engadget

EV maker Byton halts operations for six months amid financial woes

The pandemic isn't the only factor behind the pause.
Jon Fingas, @jonfingas
June 30, 2020
107 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share

Sponsored Links

Byton M-Byte prototype
Steve Dent/Engadget

Another luxury electric car maker is taking drastic action in light of financial trouble. Chinese firm Byton has told The Detroit Bureau and The Verge that it’s stopping operations for “at least” six months due to financial struggles exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Most China-based workers will be furloughed, with just a “small group” staying active in case they’re needed, according to spokesperson Dave Buchko.

The decision comes despite Byton having the support of state-controlled car giant First Auto Works, although Buchko noted that Byton had made it further than many of its rivals with a completed factory and a handful of EVs produced to clear regulatory tests. With car markets reeling, though, the company didn’t know when it would start shipping cars, let alone find enough paying customers.

Byton didn’t explicitly say this would delay the release of its first EV, the M-Byte SUV, but freezing much of its work could make that difficult to avoid. The startup had wanted to start preorders in late 2020 and make the first deliveries by 2021. As Detroit Bureau notes, that’s potentially dangerous for the brand when Ford, VW and other automotive heavyweights are likely to push ahead with their plans. While Byton may still have healthy audiences in some markets, it risks being overwhelmed by more established brands in places like Europe and North America.

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Comment
Comments
Share
107 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share

Popular on Engadget

Chrome update may extend your laptop's battery life by up to 2 hours

Chrome update may extend your laptop's battery life by up to 2 hours

View
India may require online shops to hand over site code

India may require online shops to hand over site code

View
Microsoft and Bridgestone launch real-time tire damage system

Microsoft and Bridgestone launch real-time tire damage system

View
Astronomers find the first known exposed core of a gas giant

Astronomers find the first known exposed core of a gas giant

View
Facebook envisions using holographics for super-slim VR glasses

Facebook envisions using holographics for super-slim VR glasses

View

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr