Tesla Who? BYD, Polestar, & MG Taking Australia By Storm

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Although MG, BYD, and Polestar are supplying electric vehicles in much smaller numbers than Tesla in Australia, those numbers are growing and these EVs are becoming more visible. So much so, in fact, that there are times when there are no Teslas at public charging stations but there might be 4 BYD Atto 3s or a couple of Polestar 2s and a couple of MG ZS EVs. Or you may even find a mixed bag of EVs that are not Teslas.

BYDs charging under solar canopy. Photo courtesy of Ian Porter.

Or, it could just be that the Teslas are hanging out at the Superchargers around the corner.

I am not bagging Tesla. I have been happily driving a Tesla Model 3 for the past 3 and a half years, and my wife wants a Model Y when we upgrade next year and probably a Cybertruck a few years after that. I think it is great to see the Australian market maturing and other carmakers offering choice to the driving public.

On the wild highways of Queensland, it is easy to spot the Teslas. The white ones have become so common that we have started to refer to them as tic tacs. I have a friend who says they are as common as cockroaches. We spotted 5 of them dropping our granddaughters off at school this morning.

It is hard to spot BYDs, Polestars, or MGs on the road. But, joy of joys, there was one in the carpark at Burpengary State School. I had a great chat with the driver. She had admired our Tesla last year while waiting for her BYD Atto 3 to arrive. She told me that Eagers and EV Direct did a great job with the delivery experience.

She has removed her “Build Your Dreams” logo, not sure why and didn’t think to ask her. Perhaps next time. She said she loves the interior even the banjo strings. “The kids love it!” She hasn’t gone on long trips yet and charges at home on solar during the day. She has yet to try high-speed charging.

Where are all the Teslas?
BYD in-school pickup zone. Photo courtesy of Majella Waterworth.

I had a similar chat with another young mother outside Minimbah State School another day when I was dropping off my grandson. She also had had a great experience dealing with Eagers for her BYD. There were no issues. While waiting for the car to ship to Australia she had been a little worried, but her husband reassured her by showing her the BYD video of nails being shot into the battery. She couldn’t be happier.

Where are all the Teslas?
Another happy mum picking up her kids in a BYD EV. Photo courtesy of Majella Waterworth.

It looks like the BYD Atto 3 has become the EV of choice for school mums.

MG drivers who I have interviewed for CleanTechnica also speak highly of their dealer network for support and service. And Polestar goes the extra mile.

It’s not just new cars. As EVs are purchased more and more by fleets, encouraged by the government’s changes to the Fringe Benefits Tax, we will see these vehicles enter the second-hand market. One friend commented “A used BYD will easily fit in my budget!” and another: “I live in the EV belt of Brisbane and Teslas are everywhere. But now, there is a real increase in other brands Polestar, Kia, MG, Hyundai are all growing in numbers. Today I spied a Volvo XC40 in sage green!”

Where are all the Teslas?
Not a Tesla in sight as two MG ZS EVs charge up. Photo courtesy of Emma Drake.

In 2022, BYD sold 2113 SUVs (after only being introduced in Q4), MG sold 1119 ZS EVs (after a refresh that saw a 7-month hiatus), and Polestar sold 1524 Polestar 2s. I would expect that 2023 will be a bumper year for all three models, without the hiccups experienced in 2022. In January 2023, BYD has already sold 267 cars, Polestar 164, and the figures are not yet available for the MG.

Where are all the Teslas
A couple of Polestar 2s having a feed. Photo courtesy of Darryl Luck.

Many thanks to the Facebook groups that supplied photos for use above: Electric Vehicles for Australia, BYD Owners, MG Owners, and the Polestar group. So much good free advice is available from these pages. I would encourage new owners especially to join up.

I am looking forward to seeing more Polestars, BYDs, and MGs in the wild. We have had a few of each come to our monthly coffee, cake, and EVs mornings at the Bracken Ridge Tavern. You can register at Facebook Events. Perhaps we will see you there?

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David Waterworth

David Waterworth is a retired teacher who divides his time between looking after his grandchildren and trying to make sure they have a planet to live on. He is long on Tesla [NASDAQ:TSLA].

David Waterworth has 738 posts and counting. See all posts by David Waterworth