BYD Australia cuts Atto 3 warranty, reveals high servicing costs

byd-australia-cuts-atto-3-warranty,-reveals-high-servicing-costs

New Chinese electric vehicle brand BYD will offer a shorter warranty than it originally announced – and higher servicing costs than some EV rivals.


Alex Misoyannis

BYD Australia cuts Atto 3 warranty, reveals high servicing costs-0

The 2022 BYD Atto 3 electric SUV will come with a shorter warranty than it promised earlier this year – and scheduled service prices are higher than expected – as local customer deliveries begin in the coming days.

When order books for the Atto 3 opened in mid February, BYD – through local importer EVDirect – announced a seven-year/unlimited-kilometre vehicle warranty, matching the small SUV’s closest rival, the MG ZS EV.

But an updated version of the company’s website published this week – and a notice sent to customers – has cut that to six years and 150,000km, with exceptions that reduce the coverage on some parts.



The warranty coverage for the infotainment screen and suspension range from three to four years.

The battery warranty has, however, risen from seven years/160,000km in February, to eight years/160,000km.

Servicing prices were confirmed alongside the updated warranties, revealing the Atto 3 will cost $3092 to service over eight years or 160,000km – compared to its main rival, the MG ZS EV, which costs $1611 over the same time period, or $2415 over a 140,000km distance.



BYD Australia cuts Atto 3 warranty, reveals high servicing costs-0

Importer EVDirect has responded to criticism about the warranty changes, telling Drive the vehicle warranty was cut was due to a standardised BYD policy for the Asia-Pacific region – and customer demand for additional battery coverage.

“When we launched in February, BYD hadn’t set their global warranty policy, or especially for this region, so we had to go it alone. We went with what we had agreed at the time, and that was a ‘seven plus seven’ [years of vehicle and battery warranty],” EVDirect managing director Luke Todd told Drive.

“Between February when we launched, and the last few months when we’ve been preparing [for first deliveries], the two things that have changed are that BYD have come out with a regional warranty package, which is the same in every country, right throughout this whole [Asia-Pacific] region. So that was slightly different. That was an ‘eight plus six’ [year] variant.



“And we also had a lot of feedback from our customers, where they were saying the main thing they wanted warranty on was the battery, because the battery is the heart and soul of an EV [electric vehicle].

BYD Australia cuts Atto 3 warranty, reveals high servicing costs-0

“So when we had a regional positioning from BYD head office of an ‘eight plus six’ [warranty], and we had a lot of customer feedback saying they actually wanted more warranty on the battery, it just was a natural decision for us to to make the change, to give an extra year on the on the battery, and then standardise the six years in line with the rest of the region.

BYD offers a lifetime warranty on the batteries of some of its electric cars in China – however Todd indicates it’s not feasible to offer a similar package in Australia.



“Some people have asked why we don’t pass that [lifelong battery warranty] on in Australia and in other parts of the world. And the reason for that is that China is a very different domestic market, and the structure of that warranty is very simple to enact in the Chinese market.

“[But] for us, having a lifelong warranty with different structures of ownership, lease plans and finance and so on… [Australia is] a very different market, so we always have to have a cap on the warranty at some point. And we’ve got a very healthy warranty there – eight years for the battery. We think it’s outstanding.”

BYD Australia cuts Atto 3 warranty, reveals high servicing costs-0

BYD’s six-year/150,000km warranty exceeds Tesla’s four-year/80,000km period, and Hyundai’s five-year/unlimited-kilometre offering (on time, but not distance), but falls short of MG’s seven-year/unlimited-kilometre warranty.



However, BYD fine print indicates many parts of the vehicle – including the infotainment system, shock absorbers and tyre pressure monitoring system – are not covered by the six-year warranty, instead offering three to four years of coverage depending on the component.

Some other items are covered for six months to a year. A list of what the six-year warranty does and does not cover is included at the bottom of this story – based on information from BYD’s warranty ‘statement’ terms and conditions.

While BYD’s eight-year/160,000km battery warranty matches the likes of Tesla, Hyundai and Nissan, MG offers a seven-year/unlimited-kilometre term – and Lexus offers up to 10 years of coverage on its electric-car batteries, with no distance limit.

BYD Australia cuts Atto 3 warranty, reveals high servicing costs-0

Meanwhile, service prices have been detailed for the first eight years of ownership – occurring at 12-month/20,000km intervals through Eagers Automotive dealerships and Mycar (formerly Kmart Tyre & Auto) locations.

While services in the first, third, fifth and seventh years all cost $190.37 each, services in the second, fourth, sixth and eighth years cost between $504.25 and $661.32 each – or more than three times higher than in odd-numbered years. BYD servicing costs are also three times higher than for key electric car rivals.

Over the first four years (or 80,000km), the BYD Atto 3 will cost $1546.31 to service.



For comparison, the MG ZS EV service costs are $536 in the first four years. The BYD has 12-month/20,000km service intervals, whereas the MG ZS EV has 24-month/20,000km service intervals.

Over eight years or 160,000km – the length of the battery warranty – the BYD Atto 3 will cost $3092 to service, whereas the MG ZS EV costs $1611 to service over the same period (up to 140,000km of driving).

A Hyundai Kona Electric requires services every 12 months or 15,000km – for total costs of $1205 over four years/60,000km, $2420 over eight years/120,000km, or $2970 over 165,000km (or 11 years).

Tesla electric cars don’t have official servicing schedules for owners to comply with – though the electric-car maker recommends owners replace the cabin air filter every two years (on a Model 3), alongside tyre rotations, and other regular vehicle checks (including brake fluid).

The EVDirect Australia executive told Drive “it is a myth that EVs don’t need to be serviced” and said BYD’s service prices are a mix of labour costs, and the money invested to set up the company’s operations in Australia.

“We’ve got more than 50 qualified service locations that are either in place, or will be in place in the coming weeks, ready for the first deliveries. Now that is astronomical to think that a new brand on the market has 50 highly skilled locations nationwide,” Mr Todd told Drive.



“The investment in that – not just monetary, but the investment in resource and capability. You’ve got to go to think every one of those locations has diagnostic equipment and physical technicians. It’s a massive task. We’ve been heavily focused on investing in setting up not just a network, but the best network, so when somebody buys a BYD, they have a very convenient and highly skilled capability of having the vehicle serviced.

“When you buy a BYD, you’ve got more than 50 service facilities that are already ready to go, with the relationship with Mycar and some other things we’re doing with Eagers. That’s going to increase to 300 [locations] over the coming years.”

The BYD Atto 3’s servicing schedule begins with a “safety check” after three months or 5000km (whichever comes first), which Todd says is to “check that everything’s working the way it’s meant to be”, and give “complete confidence to our customers that they have a good, reliable network that they can call anytime or pop in[to]”.

From there, services are due every 12 months or 20,000km – but those in ‘even’ years (second, fourth, etc) cost 2.5 to three times more than those in ‘odd’ years (first, third, etc), at up to $661.

The EVDirect executive says labour costs make up a significant chunk of BYD’s service costs – which for the most part are higher than its electric-car rivals – rather than spare parts, given electric cars use fewer moving components than petrol or diesel cars.

“Labour costs make up the majority of those service costs that are out. For example, when you look at the [$190] first-year service, more than 80 per cent of that is the actual labour cost. We have to factor that in, that’s just unavoidable – labor costs are what they are in Australia,” Mr Todd told Drive.



“We want to communicate that to our customers that you’re getting highly-skilled labour … and the actual spare parts component is very, very low. As we have said there’s far fewer moving parts [in an electric car] but there are still parts that have to be replaced. So in the ‘B’ service in that second year, things like brake pads and so on will be looked at and replaced if needed.

Alongside the warranties, Atto 3 buyers get 12 months of complimentary roadside assistance, with increased coverage to be made available for an additional cost.

BYD Australia cuts Atto 3 warranty, reveals high servicing costs-0

Other details confirmed by BYD and EVDirect in recent days include a range of accessories – due to become available later this year, with details of prices and choices still to come – plus an upcoming tow pack due in October, which will allow Atto 3s to pull 750kg braked or 700kg unbraked.

BYD’s importer EVDirect claims it has received more than 4000 orders for the Atto 3 (as of earlier this month) over the last six months – with the first deliveries slated to occur within the coming days, Mr Todd told Drive.

For earlier coverage on all things BYD, click the links below.



2022 BYD Atto 3 service prices

  • 12 months (one year)/20,000km – $190.37
  • 24 months (two years)/40,000km – $504.25
  • 36 months (three years)/60,000km – $190.37
  • 48 months (four years)/80,000km – $661.32
  • 60 months (five years)/100,000km – $190.37
  • 72 months (six years)/120,000km – $504.25
  • 84 months (seven years)/140,000km – $190.37
  • 96 months (eight years)/160,000km – $661.32

2022 BYD Atto 3 warranty details

Warranty contentWarranty period (whichever comes first)
BatteryEight years/160,000 kilometres (with ≥70 per cent original capacity left)
Drive unit (Motor, Motor controller, Motor controller with DC assembly, High voltage electric control assembly)Eight years/150,000km
Whole vehicle lights, tyre pressure monitoring module, suspension, ball jointsFour years/100,000km
Multimedia system, shock absorbers, belt, dust cover, bushing or gasket, release bearing, wheel bearing, PM2.5 measuring instrument, AC/DC charging port assembly, USB charging port connectorThree years/60,000km
Lead-acid storage battery (12-volt)One year/20,000km
Air conditioner filters (Filter net, High efficient strainer, Electrostatic filter), button battery, brake pads, clutch disc, tyre, wiper blade assembly, bulbs, fuse, ordinary relay (excluding integrated control unit)Six months/10,000km
All parts of the complete vehicle except those listed above (excludes various kinds of oil, charging equipment, gifts, refrigerants)Six years/150,000km

Alex Misoyannis

Alex Misoyannis has been writing about cars since 2017, when he started his own website, Redline. He contributed for Drive in 2018, before joining CarAdvice in 2019, becoming a regular contributing journalist within the news team in 2020. Cars have played a central role throughout Alex’s life, from flicking through car magazines as a young age, to growing up around performance vehicles in a car-loving family.

Read more about Alex Misoyannis LinkIcon