A joint venture betweenautomaker SAIC Motor and China’s largest online retailer Alibaba has unveiled its first electric car, Nikkei reported. A model branded “IM” (Intelligence in Motion) was developed as a competitor to American Tesla electric cars.
The car is a four-door sedan with wireless charging capability. According to the Chinese portal Autohome, this electric car can travel up to 1000 km on a single charge thanks to a new battery from China’s largest battery manufacturer Contemporary Amperex Technology. Tesla Model 3 cars in China are the most popular. Its range from a single charge is around 570 km. NVIDIA chips will also power it.
At the Shanghai Auto Show in April, the company will open pre-orders for the next model, a sports car, slated for release in 2022.
In partnership with Alibaba Group (BABA), SAIC will add more premium models to its portfolio because of Alibaba’s reputation, noted Morningstar Hong Kong expert Ivan Su. The expert services of Alibaba will help boost sales, he added.
Based on sources quoted by Reuters, Apple will also launch an electric self-driving vehicle. Since at least 2014 the company has been working on the project, according to the agency. Release date of 2024 is expected, although due to the pandemic, the release date could be pushed back to 2025.
Later, it was revealed that Apple was discussing the possibility of cooperating with Hyundai Motor in South Korea. This joint development is about developing self-driving electric vehicles by 2027, according to Korea Economic Daily TV.