BYD U8 PHEV Car Review

The fourth car I bought for myself, a big gift to myself when I’m over half of my life at 33. The small car Smart, the frustratingly troublesome Yutong C535 RV that has been repaired all the way, and the Ideal L9, which has been used so far with almost no flaws.

To start with the conclusion, the ultimate use of a car requires both zero to a hundred acceleration and luxury comfort, extreme off-road capability, and intelligent technology. But the cost is that each individual aspect can only score a maximum of 8 points. The decision was made hastily, and many features are still works in progress.

Let me briefly summarize the first week of owning the car:

Zero to a hundred acceleration:

It takes 3.6 seconds, but there is a cooldown time for the ejection start. Each ejection requires a cooldown of 180 seconds. Generally, consider it as a 4-second acceleration since the previous car was already an electric vehicle, and the improvement in acceleration experience is limited. Thanks to the four motors and a relatively excellent chassis, the agility is very good, and there is not much difference compared to the driving experience of the L9.


The Yun Chen P software for the chassis is basically still a work in progress at the software level, with many restrictions. Many functions need to be updated later via over-the-air updates. Even in the most comfortable mode, the road feel is still on the firm side. The advantage is that the hydraulic suspension’s roll control and brake dive control are very noticeable, which is quite good for a 3.5-ton high-stance beam car. Also, the steering wheel, even in the most comfortable setting, is still on the heavy side, and I prefer the type where I can turn the steering wheel with just one little finger.

Luxury and comfort:

The interior is excessively greasy, with plenty of materials but slightly lacking in detail processing. The seat wrapping is very good, and the seat massage, similar to the Ideal L9, is commendable. The seat is highly adjustable, and there are many options to customize the most comfortable sitting position. The side tilt suppression of the dynamic seat is a bit stiff, but considering the already exaggerated sense of wrapping, it is acceptable.

Dynaudio Evidence series audio system:

An audiophile may not discern much difference, but listening carefully to the song “I Remember,” which has been on constant repeat, reveals more details compared to the Ideal L9. Personally, I feel that a discernible difference may be more apparent for someone with a lean physique. The massage points, including the buttocks and thighs, receive very positive feedback. There are many adjustable options for the seat, allowing you to customize your most comfortable sitting position, and the overall feel is excellent. The side tilt suppression of the dynamic seat is a bit stiff, but considering the already exaggerated sense of wrapping, it is acceptable.

Extreme off-road:

I haven’t had much experience yet; I will try it next year and report back. However, there are currently few options for large-beam electric vehicles, and 3.5 tons are not very friendly for off-road driving. But the parameters and configurations do give you quite a bit of confidence, and I felt a bit uneasy last year driving the Ideal L9 on non-paved roads during a nationwide tour.

Intelligent technology:

Basically, the hardware is top-notch, and BYD’s infotainment system is consistently open-source Android, leaning towards a DIY approach. The downside is that the user-friendliness is basically a mess. From the perspective of ease of use, if Ideal scores 10, BYD would be at most a 5. Many aspects of the user interface are counterintuitive, and there is the challenging-to-use Huawei AR-HUD display. After experiencing this, I can’t help but appreciate Ideal’s success in the intelligent system. I initially wanted to sell the L9, but now I am hesitant because the subjective perception of intelligence is not as good as Ideal, and there is still a considerable gap from the top tier. It’s merely a “it’s not unusable” situation. Fortunately, the hardware is excellent, slightly inferior to the 8295’s 8gen1, and we can expect improvements through over-the-air updates.

Intelligent driving is also pending OTA updates; currently, there is only one lane-keeping assist feature that is relatively usable. In terms of hardware, it is fully equipped, with NVIDIA, three LiDAR sensors, and an abundance of cameras, making it the first domestic car pre-installed with an L4-level intelligent automatic driving high-speed antenna. Thanks to the abundant cameras, the 360-degree view is very useful, and the blind spot is minimal. There is a 5-lane-level streaming rearview mirror, which is also excellent.

Driving experience:

Regarding the driving experience, I tend to compare the same class while looking at the upper limits of the parameters. I have driven everything from the agile and short-wheelbase Smart to the RV that drives like a ship with a super-high attitude and a 4-meter wheelbase. The L9, as a large SUV with a wheelbase of 3 meters and 2.5 tons, lacks a bit in side tilt suppression and brake dive suppression, but the extreme parameters are impressive, passing the elk test at 80 km/h and demonstrating reliability in mountain driving. Last June, I traveled the new Tibet line with one tank of gas per day. The process included slippery road sections, and the confidence given by the anti-slip control and four-wheel drive was quite substantial. The three-mode adjustment of the suspension can also be combined with personal driving preferences. The electrification itself brings a variety of modes to try.

I personally lean towards extreme comfort, with the softest suspension, the lightest steering wheel, and the most sporty power performance. Many people say it feels like driving a ship, but having driven an RV, it’s very easy to handle. However, even when adjusted to the most comfortable setting, the U8 is still relatively firm and heavy, which makes it less comfortable compared to the L9. However, as a large-beam vehicle with a 3-meter wheelbase and weighing 3.5 tons, the U8’s side tilt suppression and brake dive suppression are quite good, indicating that the upper limit is higher than the L9. I have only briefly driven a Range Rover, and I don’t have strict comparisons with other vehicles in the same class. Still, from the information available online, the performance of a large-beam vehicle like this is already impressive. If compared to Smart, it’s better to choose Smart for a more enjoyable driving experience, but buying a car is about comprehensive consideration.

Finally, the car-buying experience:

There is still a sense of the traditional 4S dealership’s routines, and overall, it is not as good as the new forces in the industry. There is a sense of haste everywhere, and BYD faces a long and arduous journey to break into the true luxury and high-end market. Moreover, in the era of technological equality and the lowering of the technological threshold of the electric wave, it is understandable for technology-driven companies to hastily launch products. Still, one can also feel that these companies actively seek change and embrace the new era. BYD stock has been the most profitable investment I’ve made, and buying

a BYD car is a personal experience to observe if there are still opportunities. If there are any questions, feel free to criticize and discuss.