Road test: BYD F0, F3 and F6

Source:Global Times Published: 2010-7-16 16:03:11



1. What attracts you most aboutthe interior and appearance of the car?  Please state one pointfor each.

Daniele(DC): For the F0 it is the design and the dashboard; the F3 is nothing special, and the seat of the F6 is the best.

Glenn(G): (F6) It is quite stylish from the appearance and interior is good. And the materials are good.

Nick(N): F0,I like it`s the appearance most. And its dashboard is pretty good.



Ogu(O): (F6) It looks classic from the appearance and the dashboard in the interior are neatly designed.

Terry(T): I don’t care about the interior and appearance.

Deborah(D): I like the adjustable mirrors, the driver’s seat of F3 and F6. F0 needs both mirrors put near driver. I like the F3, a neat small sized sedan. F0 is a cool single girls car; F6 is a good family sized car.

Patrick(P): Of the three cars, the F0 attracts me the most for its small size. In America, we don’t have cars of this size. Maybe in Europe they have small cars. I have never driven a car that small. Look at the tire – so small! And its engine is no bigger than my motorcycle. I want to drive that car because it is special and really tiny. It is a small city car.

Daniele Chiapello

2. Have you ever driven other vehicles of the same price range? If yes, what’s the biggest difference between the two?

DC: Yes. I haven't driven long enough to notice any particular differences, but the F3 is like the worst Ford I have driven.

G: No.

N: Have the Honda and Toyota, they have better stereo,they are also more expensive.

P: No. Not really. Buying a brand-new car for 50,000 yuan or 70,000 yuan in America is impossible. But if I am buying a car for that price range, the F3 is in my price range. But I wouldn’t automatically say “Yes, this is the one.”

D: Yes. I didn’t have enough time to test it properly, so I could not make a good comparison.


3. Can you easily find a comfortable driving position by adjusting the seat and steering wheel? Is there enough space for your legs andhead?

DC: Yes, in the F6 and F3, but not the F0. Even the steering wheel is adjusted to its highest level, my legs still can touch it, and sitting in the F0, I can’t completely see the front, because I am tall and the sun visor blocks part of my sight. The F3 is Ok, the F6 is the best.

O: (F6)Yes, I can find my comfortable position after adjusting the seat. There are enough space for my legs and head.

T: Yes. But the seats are too high.

D: Yes. Front driver’s seat is easily adjustable. Head room is fine.

P: Refer to the next question. In fact, when I got in, it was all set.

Nicholas Byrne (left)

4. How do you like the seat? Is it deep enough for you to sit in? Does your back feel uncomfortable when driving for a long time? What do you think of the softness of the seat?

P: The leather seat of the F3 is deep and comfortable. But I didn’t drive it for a long time, so it is hard to tell. But it is soft enough. It is a nice car. I mean if it is for a 100,000 yuan car, all of these would be terrible. But the F3 is about 50,000 yuan.

T: OK. But could be more contorted.

D: Not able to test it for a long time. Yes, it is deep enough. Firm but not hard.

N: The driver`s seat is comfortable enough, but the back seats are narrow.

O: (F0)Yes, the interior space is a bit small and I may feel depressive when driving for a long time.

G: (F3)Yes, the seat is a little hard. And I may feel my back is uncomfortable when driving for a long time.

DC: The seat seems OK, but I should drive for longer time to really know.


5. Are you satisfied with the craft of the car’s interior? How do you like the material used forthe dashboardand the door? Is it hard or soft?

D: Average for cost of car. Not an expensive car so not expecting expensive interior.

N: The dashboard of F0 is pretty good.
G: (F0) I was satisfied with the craft the car’s interior. The dashboard and the console system look pretty and good.

O: (F6) I was satisfied with the craft of the car’s interior. The console system looks modern.

DC: The interior is OK, not particularly attractive, but not too bad.

Terry Stillman

6. How do you like the quality of the car’s metal frame? Is it as good as that those cars produced in your home country? How about the structure of the car? Does it feel solid?

DC: Judging from the little one I’ve driven (the F0), it seems good enough. I didn't notice any difference with other cars. The F0 is a little bit light.

O: (F6) Yes, the quality of the car’s metal frame is equal to those cars in my country- London.

G: (F0) Yes, the quality of the car’s metal frame is as good as those cars in my country- Australia. The structure of the car feels solid.

T: Good clean lines. No. Like most cars. Wind noise.

D: Looks fine. Doors closed properly and solidly.

N: It looks like good cars, but we can not tell wether it is good,because there is no accident.

P: The F0 does not look structurally sound. American cars are pretty solid.


7. Are you satisfied with the appearance of the car? What needs to be improved? Which part satisfies you most?

N: F6 and F3 look just like the cars you usually see. But F0 is special. I like it.

DC: The F0 is a nice looking car, and the F3 and F6 are a bit plain looking.

D: Looks like family sedan – comparable to others of that type.

G: I am satisfied with the appearance of the car F0, it looks small and cute.

O: (F6) I am satisfied with the quality of the car F6, it is high ranked and most expensive.


Glenn Harmond (right white) and Ogu Ahaneku (right black)

8. When sitting in the car, which aspectssatisfy you the most? The comfort of the seat, legroom, head room or qualityof the interior?
O: (F6) When sitting in the car, the interior design attracts me most and there are enough space for my leg and my head.

G: (F0) When sitting in the car, the quality of the interior attracts me most.

T: Head room. OK.

D: Legroom/ head room.

P: There is enough room for your legs. But the head space seems for me a little bit too close to my head. What I don’t like is that the interior of the F3 is all one color. Everything was brown or light brown and there were no accents. A nice car always has two tones inside. They would have a contrast of colors such as red and black. Like the F3, they simply inter-mixed the two colors, but did not contrast them. And the color of the F0 is really basic but then again it is an economy car.

DC: Definitely the seat.

N: The dashboard of F0. And three cars are comfortable and legroom and head room is good.


Patrick Antony (Right)

9. Any comments on the general layout and design of the car’s interior? Is every part of the car simple to use?  How do you feel about the quality of the buttons and the knobs in the car?

P: In the F3 it is the leather interior. I think they put a lot of sound suppression because it is very quiet inside the car. All I could hear is the guy sitting beside me saying, “慢一点,慢一点 (slow down, slow down).” And every part is easy to handle. I like how the dashboard is laid out and it is easy to read. But some parts look cheap. If you look closely, the fonts of the window buttons and the buttons on the dashboard are so different. They have three different fonts. The color of the letters is light. But they are supposed to be the same font.

T: All controls are within reach.

D: Mirror adjustament fine, foglights better in F3 than F6. Bounet of F0 opening a little different to find, but ok when it is known.

G: (F3) The clutch is soft and the interior design is not good, they’d better invite the professional designer to design the interior space.

O: (F3) The interior design is not good and especially the console system looks old and it doesn’t fit with the overall car.

DC: The interiors are simple but look OK. I haven’t tried any of the buttons.


10. What makes you feel most satisfied and unsatisfied when driving the car?
DC: The F0 is easy to drive in cities, but the gear box doesn’t feel nice at all. The F3 is quite smooth, but lacks acceleration. The F6 is comfortable and has a good engine; it’s the best of the three.

O: (F6) The power makes me feel most satisfied. However, it would have to be coupled with controllability.

G: (F6)The good control of the steering wheel and the gears make me feel satisfied.

T: Suspantion a little soft car does not remain level when braking hard.

D: I didn’t have enough time to drive it to make a proper statement.

N: Power is not good. But the preis is reasonable.

Deborah Howard


11. How do you like using themanual transmission when shiftinggears? Can you find the right gear easily? How about the distance between gears? How do you like the foot pedals?

N: Gear of F0 is little bit chinky. The clutch of F3 is not clear.

P: It is difficult to shift gears of the F0. The Dong Feng S30 I test drove before is much easier. It is messy and it is not tight. When I was turning the corner, I didn’t know if it was in the first or third gear. And the distances between each gear is very small. For the F3, I could easily feel which gear I was in. But starting from the first gear, I found it very difficult to find if the engine was engaging.

G: (F6) it is easy to shift gears. The foot pedals is easy to find.

O: (F6) I find it is easy to use the manual transmission when shifting gears.

T: F6 is a little tight.

D: I need to get used to the change. The clutch is soft and needs to be practised.

DC: The F0 does really badly when shifting gears. The F3 is OK and the F6 is good. The clutch of the F0 is stiff, really bad. The F3 and F6 are better but still not satisfying. 

12. Did you feel an obvious pause when the gears were shifting while driving the automatic transmission version?

DC: I didn’t try the automatic transmission version

13. How do you feel about the noise when driving?

D: OK. Maybe a little road noise in F0.

G: (F6) No clear feel, because the windows are open.

O: (F6) little noise, I think.

DC: The F6 is very silent, but the F3 and F0 are a bit more noisy.

14. How do you feel when holding the steering wheel? Is it heavy or light? How fast does the steering wheel revert back to its original position after turning? How is it controlling the steering wheel?

DC: The F3 and F6 are very easy to handle and quite responsive. The F0 is a bit too hard.

T: I don’t like the power steering because I can’t feel the road.

D: I like F6 steering wheel, very comfortable. Steering was fine.

O: (F6) It is easy to control the steering wheel.

G: (F6) It feels good when holding the steering wheel. It takes seconds to revert back to its original position after turning.

P: The steering wheel is pretty solid. There is a lot of road feedback.


N: Steering of F0 should change to a better one.

15. Please comment on the car’s power and accelerating system.

N: For F6 and F3, the power and accelerate system are not good, F0`s accelerate system is even better than F6.

P: The F0 does not have a lot of power. It is a 1-liter engine. But considering it is a tiny city car, it wouldn’t do any good even if it had high power. It is not a race car. But For the F6, the 2-liter engine is good with its price range. And the accelerating system is OK, nothing exciting.

D: F6 had plenty of power acceleration.

G: F6 is powerful when I accelerate the speed.
O: (F6) It is powerful when I accelerate the speed. I like the power system.

DC: The power and accelerating systems of the F6 are quite good, but both the F3 and F0 lack acceleration.

16. Do you feel the obvious lean of your body when turning? What do you think of the shock absorbers when crossing the bumpy road section?

DC: The F6 and F3 handle bumps well, but the F0 is a bit too rigid.

O: (F6) The shock absorbers work well when crossing the bumpy road.

D: Didn’t go over lumpy road. Turning was fine.

N: I did not drive F6 too fast, so there is no obvious problem when turning. But F0, I feel the lean.

17. Are you satisfied with the brakes?

N: Break of F6 is soft.

P: The F0 is so light. But it took us a relatively long time and long distance to brake, which means the brake is not so good because it is not a heavy car. When we were going maybe 50km/h, it was not fast. I started to brake, but it felt like it took forever to slow down.

DC: As for the F6 and F3, yes. The F0 should brake in a shorter distance considering the size.

18. Are you satisfied with the functional configuration of this car? What elseshould be added?

T: Bucket seats.

D: F0 had an exciting dashboard- once the buttons are located it is easy. I prefered the F3 layout than F6.

N: Stereo in all three cars are not good. F0 should add two speakers at the back seats.


O: I think I am satisfied with the functional configuration of F6, and it is the best of the three.

DC: It’s satisfying enough.

19. Are you satisfied with the chassis when turning at a high speed?

N: I did not drive F6 too fast, so there is no obvious problem when turning. But F0, I feel the lean.

O: Yes, it is good, I think.

DC: I didn’t have the chance to test the cars at high speeds.

T: Turn circle too wide.

D: Did not get to large speed.

20. What’s your first impression of this car? Are there any differences your expectations and then driving the car?

N: F6 and F3 look just like the cars you usually see. But F0 is special. I like it.

DC: I didn't really have any expectations, but I am pleased enough.

P: My first impression of the F0 is this is a tiny city car. As for the F3, my first impression is it is just a car, nothing exciting. It is not cheap car like the F0. And it is not a great car like the F6. It is nothing special. After all, it is just a taxi. The F6 is more impressive as it’s got better line. It’s better designed and has the best look among the three cars.

21. A comprehensive evaluation of F0, F3 and F6. Which one do you prefer?

P: The F0 is a small car and not expensive. For the money, it is not bad. But the problem is the interior is very barren. For the performance, it reacted to the turns very quickly. The acceleration is not much. The braking is the biggest problem. The brake engages immediately, but it took a long distance for the car to stop. Overall, the F0 was a good car if I was going to buy a car for city driving. For the F3, the interior is very, very plain. The sounding and acoustics are so much better than the F0. But the handling is not better than the F0. The gearbox is easy for me to find the five gears, but I cannot feel the engine when I start the car. The pickup is slow. I can feel it there but it never goes fast. But the braking is better than the F0. I think the F3’s problem is everything is just ok. Nothing is great. It is like you pay more money but just get yourself a bigger version of the F0.

For the F6, I was really impressed. I really like it. It has three–tone colors inside. The seat is really large and comfortable. Adjusting the mirror and everything is very, very easy. The turning feels good. The car responded well. And the gearbox is very nice. If it is in the market, it would be one of my top picks. The only problem is the F6 does not have a lot of pickup. It needs more reaction. When you push the gas pedal, there is a lag. It doesn’t go right away. I think the biggest difference among the three cars is how solid the car feels.


O: I like F6 most, because it has the best functional configuration and most expensive.

G: I like F0 most, because it looks cute and is not expensive. I don’t like F3 because the dashboard looks cheap and the clutch feels bad and the gear box looks not good.

T: F3, same size as my Jetta.

D: F0, it’s for round twon and fun, single person’s car.

N: F0, it is not expensive, appearance and dashboard are pretty good.

DC: I prefer the F6 because it’s more responsive and powerful;, it has the best driving position and it feels better when driving it.

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