BYD to mass-produce electric cars
China’s BYD Automobile said Monday it will start mass production of rechargeable electric cars next year after overcoming cost difficulties, China Auto News reported. The first model, powered by hybrid and electric technologies and which can be recharged with batteries, will be launched in the second half of next year after four years of research on a cheaper iron battery to replace the traditional but costlier lithium battery, the Shenzhen-based automaker said. Last year, it presented an electric concept car powered by an iron-based battery that could be charged to 70% capacity in just 10 minutes. BYD claims that the iron battery is safer and has a larger capacity. Originally formed as a mobile phone battery maker, BYD started producing cars in 2005; its first model, the F3 sedan, sold 51,000 units in the first half of the year. The company expects to sell 100,000 units this year.