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2023 BYD Seal Performance Review

The 2023 BYD Seal Performance is a dual motor, all wheel drive performance electric vehicle from BYD that packs an 82.5 kWh battery and features BYD's blade battery, a full length panoramic roof, a 15.6 inch rotating touchscreen infotainment system that takes centre stage, and an innovative climate control system that features a swing mode. Equipped with 523 bhp, 670Nm of torque, and up to 520km (323 miles) of range, the Seal goes up against other notable electric cars like the Tesla Model 3, BMW i4, Polestar 2, Hyundai Ioniq, and to an extent, the Porsche Taycan.

The Most Mature The BYD Has Ever Been

Following the launch of the BYD ATTO 3 and the BYD Dolphin, the BYD Seal appears to be the most mature car that BYD has launched into the Singapore market thus far. While both the ATTO 3 and the Dolphin are awesome cars in their own right - the Seal benefits from the absence of gimmicky features and puts forth a mature, almost luxurious persona in its design.

For starters, the exterior looks properly upmarket and sporty, with just the right amount of styling cues to make this sporty sedan desirable. If ever there were sentiments about Chinese EVs looking well, Chinese, the Seal would be the car to turn that connotation into a positive one. Inside, a well adorned, modern interior make a good first impression. There are plenty of soft touch materials that line a well presented, mature interior that still manages to feel young and sporty. In the top end Performance variant, you even get a high quality Dynaudio sound system - which outperforms most Harmon/Kardon systems you find in cars these days.

Punches Above its Weight

While not a cheap car, the Seal isn't expensive for what you get either. Priced similarly to the Tesla Model 3 Dual Motor Performance, the BYD Seal Performance is more than half a second quicker to 100km/h, and has a significantly better fitted interior in my opinion. In fact, build quality all around the car feels superior to the Model 3, with perhaps a more generous use of soft touch materials. I also like the fact that the Seal offers a more traditional car-driving experience (I mean - what's wrong with signal stalks right?).

From a performance perspective - the Seal offers tremendous value for money. Equipped with 523 bhp and 670Nm of torque that propels this unassuming sedan from 0-100km/h in a lightning quick 3.8 seconds, the Seal really does steal your heart with its exhilarating acceleration. Aside from the Dual Motor Model 3, the Seal will comfortably outrun cars two or three price segments above, and will absolutely obliterate anything else in its own segment. While speed is sometimes perceived as cheap in the world of electric vehicles, it is still impressive what BYD have managed to achieve with the Seal - especially at this price point.

Prolific All Rounder

Speed is undoubtedly a main draw when it comes to the Seal - but there is more to the car than just outright speed. Overall, the Seal is very well packaged, and offers consumers numerous bits of technology that seem to place the Chinese automaker slightly ahead of the curve when it comes to EV development than even its continental counterparts. BYD's cell to body (CTB) technology is an architectural breakthrough, where BYD's proprietary blade batteries form an actual part of the chassis, as opposed to being mounted onto a chassis. The result is an elevated of rigidity in the chassis, which translates to better handling on the road and around corners. The Seal, in essence then, isn't just quick - it also handles well.

Taking the form of a four door sedan is also a nice touch in my opinion, as the format allows a wide group of audiences to enjoy the car. A well engineered cabin with impressive space utilisation allows for three full size passengers to fit comfortably in the rear with excellent legroom, while a traditional boot opening ensures that rear headroom isn't affected as a result of a fastback design on the car. That said, a fastback would have created a larger loading aperture in the boot, further enhancing the practicality of an already competitively sized boot.

Who Will it Appeal to?

Overall, the BYD Seal is extremely quick, handles well, comfortable to ride in, well equipped with technology, and is just as, if not more practical than your average petrol powered SUV. Those are plenty of good things for a car that costs about the same as a Toyota Camry - Impressive. For those who want to enjoy the Seal, but perhaps do not require quite so much power, there are also two lower specified variants on offer. Our pick between the two would be the mid spec variant though, as it offers more than enough power for Singapore's roads, rear wheel drive agility, and costs only marginally more than the base model.


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