BYD will be managed by AC Motors

There has been a lot of chatter in the automotive industry about Ayala’s automotive arm AC Motors.

Last week, we reported that AC Motors has disclosed that Jaime Alfonso Zobel de Ayala, son of AC Chairman Jaime Augusto Zobel De Ayala, will be seconded to take the reins of the company. He will be the new president and CEO of AC Motors.

But perhaps the bigger news is the rumor about the change of distributorship of one of China’s (and the world’s) biggest automobile brands in the EV field: BYD. Tesla does have the edge in BEV global volume, but BYD leads when we count the full range of electrified vehicles such as EV and PHEV.

Rumor has (or had) it that Ayala was taking charge of BYD from previous distributor Solar Transport, but we opted to withhold our inside information until we got the definitive answer. And now we have it.

Below is the disclosure in full:


On 11 August 2023, AC and BYD PH executed a Distribution Agreement (the “Agreement”), which grants AC the right to distribute and sell BYD passenger electric vehicles in the Philippines, and appoint dealers for the purpose of selling said electric vehicles.

As distributor, AC will oversee the sale of BYD’s passenger vehicles through a dealer network, drive the expansion of the brand’s footprint in the country, and support customers’ aftersales requirements through the provision of parts and technical support, both to new buyers as well as existing BYD owners.

BYD Co. Ltd. is the world’s largest electric vehicle manufacturer, producing nearly 1.9 million battery and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles in 2022. It is also a major manufacturer of electric industrial equipment, batteries, and solar panels. Listed on both the Hong Kong and Shanghai stock exchanges, BYD is represented in the Philippines by its local subsidiary, which manages the importation of vehicles and parts.


The disclosure means that AC Motors will be the official distributor of the BYD brand, significantly expanding their EV portfolio with the Kia brand (which they are also the distributor of). Ayala is uniquely positioned in the auto industry because they can strike up partnerships with their own companies involved in energy and infrastructure such as ACEN (formerly AC Energy) that will focus on renewable energy.

If AC Motors can price their BYD vehicles competitively, they can become the prime company that can make four-wheeled EVs popular in the Philippines.

As for Solar Transport, the company has been the importer and distributor of BYD for a decade now, and they still remain with BYD as a major dealer in Metro Manila. They will open a new and much larger BYD showroom at the corner of G Araneta and Quezon Avenue in Quezon City.