n 2023, the BYD brand debuted in Chile and already has a range of four 100% electric models and a plug-in hybrid, the Song Plus DM-i. But in China there is a Song Plus EV that has just been completely renewed for the local market.
The fact is that this new model was just presented in Germany as part of the IAA Mobility Show in Munich under the name Seal U. It will be the brand’s sixth model to be marketed in the Old Continent and sales will begin towards the end of this year.
Is the Seal U now the SUV version of the Seal sedan, a model that, as we announced in Autocosmos, will also debut in Chile this year? Not close. Let’s assume it’s more of a marketing question to align all models, at least in name, with BYD’s Ocean series.
In fact, this Seal U or Song Plus EV is a technologically older vehicle than the Seal, the Dolphin or the members of the Destiny range such as the Han or the Tang, also sold in Chile. It is based on BYD’s Platform 2.0, while the Seal also uses the E-Platform 3.0 in addition to Blade batteries.
Wih the redesign, the Song Plus became very similar to the Seal, so the name change makes sense with a view to Europe.
BYD Seal U: characteristics
The Song Plus EV or Seal U is 70mm longer and 10mm taller than its predecessor, which is in line with the typical dimensions of a D-segment SUV and will make it competitive in terms of dimensions in Europe with the Tesla Model Mustang Mach. E and the BMW iX3, for example.
The Seal U is 4.79 meters long, 1.89 meters wide, 1.66 meters high and has a wheelbase of 2.77 meters. It offers space for five passengers and a 570-liter trunk.
Regarding its mechanicals, BYD reported that it will be sold exclusively with a 218 hp (160 kW) and 310 Nm electric motor transmitting its power to the front wheels, and may add a dual-motor, all-wheel drive variant to the range. forward.
As usual, it is offered with two battery sizes. The first version, called Design, will have a battery capacity of 71.8 kWh and offer an autonomy of 420 kilometers (WLTP). The second version, Comfort, has an 87 kWh battery that allows an autonomy of 500 kilometers (WLTP).
The design is quite similar to that of the Seal, from the nose to the headlights, which have a very distinctive notch, to the pronounced side ribs. If we didn’t know that they are role models of different generations, we could conclude that they were born brothers.
Inside there’s a more conservative design than the Seal, with a clean T-shaped dashboard design, but it retains the huge technological load that BYD gives its cars and gives a pleasant feeling of quality, of a well-made product.
The central screen is 15.6 inches and, like all BYDs, can be oriented vertically or horizontally. It has a few physical buttons on the center console connected to a small glass-faced joystick shifter.
In contrast to the Seal, which has a cantilevered digital instrument, the Seal U has it housed more conventionally in the dashboard. It is still digital and is complemented by a head-up display. It is worth noting that it offers, among other things, numerous driving assistance systems, V2L technology for load distribution with electrical devices.