CES 2019 | Byton readies Tesla rival, complete with 5G, Alexa integration - TechCentral

CES 2019 | Byton readies Tesla rival, complete with 5G, Alexa integration

Chinese motoring start-up Byton is preparing to begin production of its smart intuitive vehicle, fitted with a 48-inch digital dashboard, a touch screen embedded in the steering wheel and support for 5G and Amazon Alexa among its futuristic features.

The Tesla competitor provided an update on its plans at CES 2019, the main tech event of the year held in Las Vegas, with a fresh glimpse inside its latest interior designs for the M-Byte, an electric SUV, following its debut at CES last year.

Its 48-inch dashboard display can be controlled using the tablet on the steering wheel, a touchpad in the centre console, or hand gestures, to carry out a variety of tasks, from mapping out a route, to in-car entertainment.

“The Byton M-Byte could become the most important device in your digital life and we are very much convinced that it will do so,” said co-founder Carsten Breitfeld. “It reinvents and transforms your journey through the use of artificial intelligence and machine learning.”

“We are on track to start production by the end of this year,” co-founder Daniel Kirchert added. “The fully operational capacity will be 300 000 cars a year.”

Two models of the M-Byte will be available, starting at US$45 000 — around R625 000 — with a range of 400km on a single charge, while the bigger battery option offers up to 500km. There will also be an option to add some autonomous features.

Byton also showed off its K-Byte concept sedan at CES, featuring a digital grille, which it plans to release sometime in 2021.

A third model is expected in 2023, the company said.

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