Xiaomi CEO says he is putting his ‘reputation on line’ for this product

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Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun has teased the price of the company’s first car, the SU7, on his Weibo account. The announcement comes as a precursor to the official price reveal and the commencement of orders for the vehicle, which is expected to happen later this week. Furthermore, Lei Jun has also said that this is a product on which he is putting his reputation on line. “Three years ago, I announced that Xiaomi was going to enter the EV market. This is my final new venture — I am putting my reputation on the line to fight for a vision I deeply believed in,” Lei said in a post on X.

As China’s fifth-largest smartphone maker, Xiaomi’s pivot towards electric vehicles comes at a time when the demand for smartphones is plateauing. The company has pledged a substantial investment of $10 billion over the next decade in the auto sector. This is further backed by production capabilities at a Beijing factory operated by a unit of the state-owned BAIC Group, with an annual capacity of 200,000 vehicles. Xiaomi’s foray into the EV market is not just about diversifying its portfolio but also to catch the fancy of growing number of electric car buyers in China.

Cheaper than Tesla
The SU7, which stands for Speed Ultra, is poised to mark Xiaomi’s entry in the EV market. Lei Jun’s Weibo post indicated that the car would be priced below 500,000 yuan (approximately $69,424), making it a competitive option against established players like Tesla. The CEO’s ambition for the SU7 is clear: to create the best looking, easiest to drive, and smartest car within its price bracket. “The goal of the Xiaomi SU7 is to be the best looking, best driving, and most intelligent sedan under 500,000 yuan ($69,328),” Lei said in his post on Weibo.

The SU7 will be available in two versions, one with a driving range of up to 668km and another extending up to 800km on a single charge. This surpasses the range of Tesla’s Model S, which offers up to 650km, signalling Xiaomi’s commitment to not just compete but lead in terms of performance.

The anticipation for Xiaomi’s electric car has been building since its unveiling in December. With technology touted to deliver acceleration superior to Tesla cars and Porsche’s EVs, the SU7 is set to make a splash in the EV pool. Xiaomi stores across China have already begun showcasing the “ocean blue” version of the car, drawing in crowds of prospective customers and car enthusiasts eager to get a closer look.

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