Smartphone giant Xiaomi enters the EV race with the launch of its first electric car, SU7
Xiaomi, known for its smartphones and pocket gadgets, made a big move on Thursday by unveiling its very first electric car, which the company said can outperform Porsche and has more tech than Tesla. With this launch, the company said it aims high, setting its sights on becoming one of the top five automakers globally.
This move follows Xiaomi’s acquisition of the autonomous driving tech startup Deepmotion for approximately $77.37 million two years ago, signaling its entry into the competitive electric vehicle market. Xiaomi sees this acquisition as a means to enhance the technological competitiveness of its electric vehicle business and diversify beyond smartphones.
The newly revealed electric sedan, named the SU7 (with “SU” standing for Speed Ultra), has generated considerable anticipation. CEO Lei Jun highlighted its “super electric motor” technology, claiming acceleration speeds that surpass Tesla and Porsche electric vehicles.
Despite the challenging backdrop of China’s saturated auto market, which faces overcapacity and slowing demand leading to intense price competition, Xiaomi remains optimistic about its entry.
Lei Jun expressed ambitious goals during the launch, envisioning Xiaomi as one of the world’s top five automakers within the next 15 to 20 years. He emphasized the company’s commitment to elevating China’s overall automobile industry and spoke of creating a “dream car” that rivals Porsche and Tesla, Reuters reported.
“By working hard over the next 15 to 20 years, we will become one of the world’s top 5 automakers, striving to lift China’s overall automobile industry,” he said at the debut.
The SU7’s appeal extends beyond its performance, as it shares an operating system with Xiaomi’s popular phones and electronic devices. This integration allows seamless access to the company’s range of mobile apps, a feature likely to attract customers. Bill Russo, CEO of Shanghai-based advisory firm Automobility, noted Xiaomi’s established position as a consumer electronics brand with a vast ecosystem of “Mi Fans” or smart device users in the hundreds of millions.
Meanwhile, Xiaomi’s aspirations in the electric and autonomous vehicle arena will bring it into direct competition with other major players in China’s electric vehicle industry, such as Baidu and even Huawei. Additionally, it will face off against well-established car manufacturers like Tesla, Xpeng, and Nio. The company is entering a dynamic and competitive landscape, contending with both tech giants and automotive industry leaders in its pursuit of success in the electric vehicle market.