BYD seems to have revealed what F will represent with its new off-roader brand: Fang Cheng Baowhich literally translates to the Leopard Formula.
A page has been created on the Chinese social media network Weibo for Fang Cheng Bao and, given an earlier copyright filing for it by BYD, it looks like a lock.
Not content with just launching its luxury Yangwang brand, with the U8 SUV that rivals the Mercedes-Benz G-Class, it is now launching the Fang Cheng Bao brand with its own boxy SUV.
The new brand will be positioned below Yangwang, with a price range of 400-600,000 yuan (A$84,060 to $126,091). That’s roughly how much a Land Rover Defender costs in Australia.
The as-yet-unnamed Fang Cheng Bao mod, codenamed SF, is set to be revealed this month.
Images shared in Chinese media earlier this year revealed boxy, upright styling in the vein of the Defender, Ford Bronco, and a raft of new Chinese SUVs like the Jetour Traveler and GWM Tank 300, right down to the tailgate-mounted spare tire carrier.
Spy photos reveal a plush cabin with leather-wrapped surfaces and metal-and-crystal-faced switches.
Chinese media reports indicate the SF is 5m long with a 2.8m wheelbase, and will use a plug-in hybrid powertrain for a range of 507km with a combined range of 1000km on the CLTC cycle.
It will also reportedly use BYD’s new DiSus-P suspension system, also known as Intelligent Hydraulic Body Control System, which is also found in the Yangwang U8.
This can control damper oil intake, damping adjustment valve and stiffness adjustment valve, while offering up to 200mm of travel.
The system can also lift all four wheels simultaneously, or independently for one wheel. BYD claims it can provide an immediate 200 percent increase in stiffness during high-speed cornering or other “intense” driving conditions, while also reducing impact loads in a collision.
Yangwang and Fang Cheng Bao join the Denza brand, which was formerly a joint venture with Daimler which has now been taken over by BYD. It sits below both brands in terms of price.
It is unclear whether Fang Cheng Bao – and Yangwang, for that matter – will be exported from China.
BYD is busy embarking on a massive global expansion, with its namesake brand recently entering markets such as Australia and Europe.
With its export program, however, it has focused on its electric vehicles and not its plug-in hybrids.
The Chinese automaker only produced electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles as of last year.