The first electric car from Xiaomi was unveiled a few days after another one from Huawei, indicating that the Chinese tech titans’ efforts to get into the electric vehicle race are starting to pay off.
On Thursday, two days after Huawei debuted its Aito M9 SUV, Xiaomi introduced the SU7 car. The two businesses have established themselves as producers of cellphones and other consumer electronics, but they have recently made clear that they have high hopes for the automotive industry.
Xiaomi declared in 2021 that it would put $10 billion into a smart EV-focused subsidiary over the course of the following ten years.
CEO Lei Jun stated during the launch event on Thursday that the firm was starting a “new decade” and that, during the next 15 to 20 years, it intended to rank among the top five automakers in the world.
“It’s a new starting point for Xiaomi, and I’m convinced that one day in the future, there will be Xiaomis running on every road of this world.”
During a three-hour-long presentation, Lei said the company wanted to create “a dream car that is as good as Porsche and Tesla.”
It quickly realized the uphill battle it faced, he added. “To build a good car, it is still very, very difficult,” he told the audience.
Lei countered that Xiaomi had, after a few years, developed a product that was comparable to both the Porsche Taycan Turbo and the Tesla Model S, comparing the three cars’ respective performance metrics on an onstage slide.
Shanghai-based automobile industry analyst Mark Rainford, who runs the “Inside China Auto” YouTube channel, referred to Xiaomi’s product as “a winner” and said it will do well in China.
He remarked, “It looks very compelling on paper, both performance- and tech-wise,” adding that the automobile could link to Xiaomi devices with ease.
According to Rainford, the corporation seems to be targeting a distinct market by producing what is considered a luxury good.
“It’s clear they believe they’re a match or even better than Porsche and Tesla’s flagship models, which is very ambitious for a brand most might consider a very strong consumer electronics brand but not necessarily perceive as premium,” he added.
Xiaomi did not reveal the model’s price at the event, though Lei said it would be “a little bit high.”
The company’s electric vehicle debut coincides with Huawei’s introduction of the Aito M9, a six-seater car with a starting price of 469,800 yuan, or around $66,500.
According to Huawei, the SUV boasts “the largest space performance in its class,” and the company has included upscale amenities like a projection screen that mimics the sensation of viewing a movie in a theater without making the spectator feel queasy. According to a statement released on Tuesday, the car also has double armrests and seats with massage capabilities to let passengers unwind while traveling.
The world’s largest auto market, congested with competitors and glutted with inventory, has recently witnessed a price war as a result of intense rivalry. The new cars join this market.
Additionally, Huawei unveiled an electric sedan last month that was intended to compete with Elon Musk’s Tesla (TSLA).