[News] Lei Jun States Xiaomi’s First Car Involves 3,400 Engineers with R&D Investment Exceeding RMB 10 Billion

2023-12-18 Emerging Technologies editor

In the episode of CCTV’s “Face to Face” program aired on the evening of December 17, Xiaomi Group’s founder and chairman, Lei Jun, was interviewed and discussed Xiaomi’s efforts in the high-end and automotive sectors.

Lei Jun told reporters that he believes Xiaomi has many natural advantages in entering the automotive industry. He emphasized that the essence of smart electric vehicles today lies in the integration of the automotive and consumer electronics industries, constituting a significant convergence. Therefore, entering the automotive sector poses challenges for Xiaomi, but overall, the difficulty is manageable.

Lei Jun mentioned that three years ago, he thought making cars was a challenging endeavor. After conducting user research, they established the principle of adhering to conventions while introducing surprises: fully respecting the norms of the automotive industry, using mature industry technologies to ensure the quality of the first car, and innovating within this overarching framework.

Lei Jun stated, “For our first car, we’ve invested more than 3,400 engineers, and the entire research and development expenditure has exceeded RMB 10 billion. We’ve used more than ten times the investment. With this level of confidence, I approached it with a ‘must-win’ attitude.”

When discussing expectations for the first car, Lei Jun mentioned that there is definitely an expectation, but he acknowledges the complexity of the automotive industry. He expressed concerns, particularly fearing that the car might not gain immediate popularity, and people may not buy it initially.

However, he is even more worried that if everyone rushes to buy, there might be a wait of one or two years, which would undoubtedly lead to severe criticism.

Previous reports indicated that Xiaomi’s inaugural car aims to deliver 300 units in December, with preparations currently in progress for exhibition vehicles.

Earlier on December 12, information about Xiaomi’s car model SU7 battery appeared in the latest catalog of new energy vehicle models exempt from vehicle purchase tax released by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.

The information shows that Xiaomi’s car model SU7 has two battery versions with capacities of 101kWh and 73.6kWh, respectively. Depending on the specific model, the corresponding CLTC (China Light-Duty Vehicle Test Cycle) range for the 101kWh version is 800km and 750km, while for the 73.6kWh version, it is 668km and 628km.

(Photo credit: China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology)

Please note that this article cites information from IJIWEI, Sanyan Interactive Technology and Futunn.