United States car buyers who want to switch to electric but who still want the heft of an SUV will soon be spared that tough choice, as Chinese electric-vehicle startup Byton is bringing its M-Byte e-SUV Stateside. Byton announced this week that it received both a dealer license and a distributor license from the State of California, kicking off what the company touts as its “innovative hybrid retail model” in the U.S. The hybrid element there doesn’t refer to the EVs but to “the sale and service of vehicles using Byton’s own infrastructure” as well as through automotive retail and aftersales service partners, the company said in a statement . [Photo: Byton] The M-Byte electric SUV is Byton’s first model and is expected to launch in China in 2020 before becoming available in the U.S. and Europe in 2021. Byton—which was founded in Hong Kong in 2017 and unveiled its first concept car the following year—opened a North American headquarters in Santa Clara in 2017. The company initially said its SUV would launch in the fourth quarter of 2019, to be followed by a sedan and an MPV in 2021 and 2022. Those timelines have clearly changed, but the […]

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