BYD adds DJI docked drone option to YangWang’s U8 e-SUV


Chinese auto maker BYD is taking to the skies with DJI drones in its continued effort to best Tesla for the title of the world’s biggest electric car manufacturer.

BYD revealed its drone partnership with fellow Shenzhen-based company DJI on Monday during the car maker’s Dream Day 2024 event, featuring its automotive wares and add-on tech enhancements.

Photos and videos uploaded by online leaker @DealsDrone offered up a long clip of what appears to be a modified Mavic 3 Pro drone and roof-mounted dock in operation, as well as a photo of the car’s internal control panel with what appears to be a built-in DJI Fly app.

The latter image also contains a shot of an apparently new, screenless drone remote, whose un-DJI look may suggest a BTD design.

The docked drone option is mounted atop a U8 SUV produced by BYD’s luxury sub-brand YangWang. In addition to the moderately tweaked DJI Mavic 3 Pro, the aerial component includes a not inconsequential-sized roof dock

A promotional film released by BYD of the car and nest in operation indicates the dock contains three replacement batteries, and a loading apparatus for swapping those needing recharging.

The film demonstrates one obvious use of the SUV-drone combo, with the craft flying overhead and following the car in tracking mode to provide aerial perspectives of road conditions lying ahead

Shots of the vehicle traversing a one-lane passage atop a towering dam also offer compelling  evidence the paring will capture some pretty incredible travel imagery, too.

introduction of the DJI drone as a U8 SUV option is one of the features BYD is promoting in its smart car offer. 

Earlier this year, the company announced it had produced three million electrified cars in 2023, ostensibly beating Tesla’s 1.8 million for the crown of world’s biggest e-vehicle manufacturer. With 1.4 of those being hybrid, however, Musk Motors still holds tight to the purist’s all-battery title.

Meanwhile, Tesla users can also get in on car-drone activity following Heisha’s December rollout of its “DCap CT drone dock” specially designed for the recently rolled out Tesla pickup. 

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