Chinese tech giant Xiaomi has reportedly finished building an engineering prototype of its first electric vehicle planned for launch in 2024. Xiaomi has been working on an EV for some time and a new report from China suggests that the prototype was completed on September 28. However, the company has not confirmed whether this news is true or not.
More than 10 billion US dollars is being invested in the company’s plans to establish itself as a serious player in the electric vehicle sector. They have more than 1,000 people working on the project and plan to start building a factory in Beijing soon with the capacity to build 300,000 vehicles annually.
Xiaomi’s founder and chief executive, Lei Jun, has confirmed that the vehicle will feature state-of-the-art autonomous driving technology and testing of this system has begun. The company has around 144 autonomous prototype tests across China, some of which include the BMW 5-Series and BYD Han models equipped with their drive sensor suite where the system will use LiDAR technology.
Xiaomi’s first electric vehicle is widely expected to be a sedan that can be offered in two different configurations. The former can use a 400 volt platform while the flagship model can use the 800 volt architecture and is offered with innovative BYD Blade-style batteries and Kirin CATL batteries.
In August, Lei Jun described Xiaomi’s entry into the electric vehicle market as a “forced choice” driven by the fusion of the automotive and consumer electronics industries. “Xiaomi has tens of millions of fans and loyal users in China, and as long as 1% of them are willing to give us a chance, Xiaomi’s automotive business can get a fantastic start,” explains Lei Jun in his recently released book.