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China tech

From smart cities to monorails, China's BYD charts next course

Buffett-backed electric-vehicle maker plans to diversify as subsidy cuts hurt market

BYD's SkyRail monorail snakes through the company's corporate headquarters in Shenzhen, China. (Photo by Yusuke Hinata).

GUANGZHOU -- BYD, China's largest producer of electric vehicles, is switching gears as sales slump, leveraging its battery expertise to make inroads in smart-city planning and other energy management solutions.

"Automobiles is just one piece of the operation," Liu Xueliang, BYD's general manager for Asia-Pacific auto sales, told Nikkei in an interview. "Our company holds other key businesses outside of autos, such as batteries, information technology and monorails."

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