DENZA unveiled its new all-electric vehicle show car at Auto China 2012 in Beijing. The battery-driven vehicle that defines a new level of sophistication in the Chinese New Energy Vehicle (NEV) segment is the result of the partnership between BYD and Daimler.
Auto China 2012 marks the first appearance of the DENZA brand at a motor show. It is also the first landmark event since the official launch of the brand, which took place in Shenzhen in March this year. The arrival of DENZA marked the first strictly NEV brand in the Chinese market.
“Even before the birth of DENZA, Shenzhen BYD Daimler New Technology Co., Ltd. (BDNT) has created a very special ‘first’: When Daimler and BYD made their partnership official in the spring of 2010, they founded the first joint venture in China dedicated solely to New Energy Vehicle. The Joint Venture is making extremely positive progress with the first prototypes of the future production model already out on the streets,” said Ulrich Walker, Chairman of the Board of Directors of BDNT and Chairman and CEO of Daimler Northeast Asia. “We are very much on track with the plans for our DENZA vehicle.”
Over 200 engineers and experts from both companies have gathered and combined their strengths at BDNT’s base in Shenzhen. BYD is providing its expertise in battery technology and e-drive systems, as well as their experience in bringing electric vehicles onto the roads of China. Daimler is contributing more than 125 years of excellence in automotive design and know-how in vehicle architecture, safety and quality.
The concept car unveiled today, a full electric battery-driven model, was designed, and will be built and sold in China. “We are reaching out to those who believe that state-of-the-art technologies and beautiful concepts can blend together into the perfect mobility solution without compromising on safety and comfort, to provide both a modern and green urban lifestyle,” remarked BDNT COO Arno Roehringer while introducing the car at Auto China 2012. “We are creating DENZA not only for the people of today, but also for inspiring our next generations.”
“We brought traditional Chinese elements forward into the next generation with a priority on ergonomic design and some futuristic innovations,” said CEO Lian Yubo, on hand to point out some of the features of the car to the gathering of auto media and various dignitaries. “The rear seating area was designed to feel as much as possible like a lounge area. The lounge character really comes out through the reclining rear seats integrated into the design.” He went on to describe the chrome inside and out, the wood and copper features in the interior, and the ambient light system that runs all throughout the cabin making night driving more pleasant without compromising safety.
The exterior chrome can be illuminated to provide perfected visibility and safety. It is visually integrated with the battery storage area, which succeeds better than most EVs at keeping the batteries out of passengers’ way. Combined with the rear-hinged rear doors, the DENZA concept car is easily accessible, with no awkward battery-related steps to clear while entering or exiting the vehicle.
The DENZA booth at Auto China is carefully designed to reflect the strengths of the car, as well as the values of the company. The main feature is a large white ribbon which flows all around the booth, defining its dimensions and the character of the interior. The sense of movement – like a car on the road – is reinforced by the actual movement of the light in the LED strip along its rocker panel. The LED light is the identical blue found in DENZA logo and in the body paint of the car. This “DENZA blue” color represents the company’s twin conceptual foundations of environmental responsibility and cutting-edge technology.
China is the home of DENZA because of its potential as an NEV market. With its expanding middle class, increasing urbanization, open-minded consumers, and a supportive government determined to reduce their reliance on crude oil, central government expects the number of NEVs in China to rise from its current level of 10,000 to 5,000,000 by 2020 according to the latest NEV industrialization plan. With the launch of its new concept car, and a production model slated for release in 2013, DENZA is “on track”.