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BYD Seal 2023: Australian release date confirmed as Tesla Model 3 rival spotted on local roads


Eagle-eyed BYD fans have spotted the Seal sedan on Australian streets where it is undergoing testing ahead of its official launch later this year

BYD distributor EV Direct has been spotted testing its Seal sedan on Australian roads ahead of its local on-sale date in the third quarter of this year – between July and September.

EV Direct CEO Luke Todd confirmed to Chasing Cars that Seal would become the third vehicle in its local lineup following the arrival of the Atto 3 small SUV in 2022 and the expected introduction of the Dolphin hatch just months prior in the second quarter of this year.

BYD Seal 2023 rear
The BYD Seal has been spotted undergoing testing in Australia. Credit: Al Vucetic

Notably, the Seal will offer Australian buyers a new rival in the electric sedan segment which is populated by the Tesla Model 3 and Polestar 2, but will also welcome the Hyundai Ioniq 6 later this year.

What do the pictures tell us?

Facebook user Al Vucetic snapped the Seal wrapped in camouflage last week and shared images with the group BYD EV Owners Australia.

The images show the Seal on the back of a tow truck, likely being transported between testing locations, and wearing 19-inch wheels wrapped in Continental Sport Contact 7 tyres.

BYD Seal 2023 wheel
19-inch wheels and Continental tyres were spotted on the prototype. Credit: Al Vucetic

The final specification has not yet been locked in but it’s likely that the vehicle we see here will be similar to what is launched in Australia later this year.

EV Direct CEO Luke Todd confirmed to Chasing Cars that both the Dolphin and Seal were currently undergoing testing in Australia, with the team working closely with BYD Australia during this process.

What can we expect from the Seal?

Images and details of the Seal have slowly been leaking out of China since last year with the sedan expected to be offered in a wide range of countries.

BYD Seal 2023 front
The Seal is expected to arrive in the third quarter of this year. Credit: Al Vucetic

Production of both single- and dual-motor variants have been confirmed (at least in China), with the latter available with a theoretical power output of 380kW if you add the grunt of the 150kW front and 230kW rear motors together.

These outputs are said to be capable of providing a 0 to 100 km/h of 3.8 seconds.

Battery outputs are not yet known but China Car News reports that different variants will offer a driving range of 550km, 650km and 700km – though it’s unknown if this was measured against the more accurate WLTP standard which is typically used to verify EV range in most markets.

Buyers can also reasonably expect the large rotating touchscreen sold in Chinese-market models to make it to Australia after the Atto 3 previously introduced this unique feature to our market. 

Chasing more Seal?