Byton: Customer experience at its maximum?

In Shanghai we had the chance to meet Byton, a car company which was founded some years ago and is now aiming to launch its first vehicle after 3 years of development in 2019.

The company uses consciously German engineering, Chinese manufacturing capabilities and Silicon Valley technology rootedness. Founded by former BMW managers, Byton was successful in attracting top talents from Tesla, Apple, Google and BMW who dreamed of launching a car which radicalizes our experience of commuting from point A to B.

The model which is planned to be launched on the market in 2019 revolutionizes our image of a car: having a Shared Experience Display (125x25cm) in the front plus 3 additional screens, it will allow us to use voice, touch and gesture control, biometric identification and Amazon Alexa.

As an electric vehicle it will also be promising: Byton works together with the biggest names as technological partners, without having the complicated history of long-term relationships (and dependencies) which sometimes might also lock opportunities.

The factory is currently being built, the first model will be on the market in 2019, followed by two other models that will be built on the same scalable platform – all models will be electric, autonomous, connected and upgradable remotely.

What are the challenges? The most challenging is data transmission speed – at launch 4G will be utilized which will be upgraded to 5G once this technology becomes widely available.
The line of innovations continues with an innovative dealer network and with the possibility of revolutionizing car sharing.

When listening to Byton, we did our inner journey from skeptical to enthusiastic. Besides having the contagiousness of the enthusiasm of our Byton dialog partner, we could experience several streams and lines of innovations:

  • The concept of a car as an interface/platform to our everyday life, where we can live our life while commuting, connect to our friends and arrange all the things of everyday life.
  • The technological specifications: the range, the look inside and outside, the full customization of the car to the driver and to the passengers.
  • Utilizing various strengths over geographical regions: the German engineering, Chinese manufacturing and Silicon Valley innovation spirit.
  • The concept of the dealer network – fast growing with rational resources, building partnership with the dealers.
  • The market entry strategy: China is a huge market for electric cars and there is a lot of focus on electrification. Europe and the United States will follow, after having some first experiences. This allows learning and rapid adaptation.
  • Breaking several burdens and redefining some essential paradigms of the automotive industry: the one of technology, the one of how a car „normally” looks like, the one of how long it takes to launch a product or take a decision.

In 2019 we will see the reactions of the market and of the competitors. So far it looks as if Byton has utilized the successes of its competitors consciously and has learned from their difficulties too. If Byton succeeds, competitors will also have the chance to learn from this – and customers will be happy.

Would you like to know more?