Arriving in the Xiaomi electric car, just not clear when.
From a mobile manufacturer mobile phone manufacturer Xiaomi has become a gadget giant, producing pretty much everything from electronics to bikes through air purifiers, powered by batteries in most cases. The product range is therefore huge and there is a growing focus on transport, and China is not only the world’s largest car market: it produces and sells the most EVs, and the state and local government invest the most in local electric car brands and fast charging. infrastructure.
The Wuling Hongguang Mini EV is a cute, cheap, tiny electric car that has taken over the Chinese EV market (source: Burry) [+]
China has literally sensed electric cars: the smog of overcrowded big cities can be linked to the deaths of thousands of people every year, plus in international technology competition batteries and electric propulsion are an obvious major blow now and in the future, and the communist regime has been able to transfer subject to astounding support. Now don’t just BYD, SAIC, Geely, Xpeng or the hugely fun Wuling cheap local supportot China has quietly become dominant in the mining, processing and production of battery raw materials (especially lithium) and into the price manipulation of crude oil.
Announcing the creation of Xiaomi Automobile in Chinese social media (source: Weibo / GizmoChina) [+]
On the consumer side, of course, the net is positive: although China’s energy sector is not the least green for the time being, there are serious public and local investments focusing on renewable energy, so while charging an electric car still relies heavily on fossil fuels, the technological interest of the locals also contributes to the huge demand for EVs. No wonder he develops a happy-unhappy electric car, powertrain, back-end software, self-driving service, fast charging network and battery, with Huawei, among mobile manufacturers, for example. Xiaomi announced in March that it would invest tens of billions of dollars in yuan over the next ten years. This is, of course, a multi-year project, so for an EV with an Mi logo or a tangible result of some kind of partnership, you might have to wait until the middle of the decade. In any case, the brand has taken a step closer to its goal: it has successfully registered Xiaomi Automotive Inc. with a capitalization of ten billion yuan ($ 1.55 billion) with Lei Jun as founder, president and CEO.
Lei Jun talks about Xiaomi’s electric car plans in March (source: CNBC) [+]
“Xiaomi is thinking of producing high-quality smart EVs for the global market to fully meet the diverse smart gadget needs of our users,” said the CEO, and the new company already has more than 300 employees and potential collaboration with local electric companies beyond about a hundred negotiations. and manufacturing, with another 200 automotive veterans also sitting at a table. THE GizmoChina notes: Lei Jun visited SAIC headquarters in collaboration with Alibaba a few weeks ago, but BYD, the Great Wall, and Wuling also sat down at the table with the CEO. Obviously, there is a huge benefit from serious government encouragement, access to raw materials and cells (China alone dominates the cheap iron phosphate-based LFP battery market, for example), and of course cheap labor, but we need to grope carefully on the subject.
There are cautionary examples: Jia Yueting fell into the EV project (source: Autonews) [+]
Another big mobile brand and its leader, LeTV’s Jia Yueting, practically fell into a Sino-US electric car project called Faraday Future, which proved to be an astounding money-sink for even a hugely successful and wealthy businessman, with Nikola Motor Company or Lordstown Motor a good example in the West. that the billion-dollar investment is no guarantee of the success of an EV startup, because it is a simple, mass-produced product to produce a prototype. hard. Xiaomi benefits from decades of experience in software, hardware, and ultimately battery power, as well as understanding the user experience and selecting the right local manufacturing partners and suppliers. This is why it is likely that the specific production of electric cars will be entrusted to an experienced Chinese partner, who will be responsible for integrating into the ecosystem. But that when there will be Xiaomi EV, of course, Mr. Lei Jun refused to betray, and probably because even he does not know.