China’s Xiaomi to enter cut-throat EV market for the first time

At a press presentation on Thursday in Beijing, the Chinese consumer tech company Xiaomi will introduce its very first electric vehicle (EV), entering a highly competitive field within the largest automobile market globally.

Due in large part to purchasing subsidies that ended in late 2022, China’s EV industry has expanded quickly in recent years. As a result, numerous local automakers are fiercely competing with one another for market share.

With the SU7 EV, Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun claims he is confronting Chinese automaker BYD and Elon Musk’s Tesla, putting his “reputation on the line” in the process. Xiaomi is well-known worldwide for its reasonably priced smartphones and stylish home appliances.

Sleek, sporty, and available in blue bay, olive green or elegant grey, the SU7 even includes “sound simulation”, Lei says, “to recreate the thrill of driving a sports car”.

Lei has not divulged the price, but has promised it will be “the best-looking, best-driving and smartest car” costing under 500,000 yuan ($69,200).

Analysts have said they expect it to come in at half that price.

“If my guess is correct, the 200,000 to 250,000 yuan range, that actually is the most competitive segment in the China EV space at the moment,” Johnson Wan, an analyst at Jefferies Financial Group Inc, told Bloomberg.

Xiaomi is the world’s third-biggest smartphone maker, and its experience in that sector has helped shape its EV strategy.

The SU7’s pricing was influenced by the fact that, according to Lu Weibing, president of Xiaomi, the company’s premium smartphones were used by about 20 million people, as CNBC reported last month.

“I think the initial purchasers will be very overlapped with the smartphone users. So that’s our strategy,” said Lu.

This article has been posted by a News Hour Correspondent. For queries, please contact through [email protected]
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