Automotive

Foxconn launches multi-billion dollar Foxtron electric car company

Foxconn launches multi-billion...
The Foxtron Model E, developed with Pininfarina, signals Foxconn's lofty ambitions in the electric car business
The Foxtron Model E, developed with Pininfarina, signals Foxconn's lofty ambitions in the electric car business
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The Foxtron Model E, developed with Pininfarina, signals Foxconn's lofty ambitions in the electric car business
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The Foxtron Model E, developed with Pininfarina, signals Foxconn's lofty ambitions in the electric car business
OK, it's not the sexiest thing that's ever had Pininfarina written on it
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OK, it's not the sexiest thing that's ever had Pininfarina written on it
Swivelling screen between the back seats
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Swivelling screen between the back seats
White leather interior with a generous set of dash screens
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White leather interior with a generous set of dash screens
The Foxtron Model C compact
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The Foxtron Model C compact
The Foxtron Model T urban electric bus
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The Foxtron Model T urban electric bus
View gallery - 6 images

Foxconn is going into the electric car business. Yes, that Foxconn, the Taiwanese electronics giant best known for manufacturing iPhones, Nintendos, Playstations, XBOXes, and a lot more. Pulling in about US$180 billion in revenue in 2020, it's got the money to do what it likes, including getting Italian design studio Pininfarina on board to pen its first luxury sedan.

Foxconn is putting somewhere between US$1 and 2 billion into establishing new facilities in Thailand, where it's building a manufacturing plant, an engineering R&D center and supply chain management. It expects to be producing about 50,000 cars a year in two to three years, and will extend that to 150,000 a year in reasonably short order.

Perhaps it makes sense; electric cars are probably closer to the domain of technology manufacturers than traditional automotive companies. The powertrains are so much simpler, and electronics and software dominate so much of the cars now. Foxconn is moving to hire 2,500 software specialists over the next three years to develop and roll out its Smart Gateway, Smart Cockpit, and Smart Autonomous Driving packages, among others.

At the company's Hon Hai Tech Day 2021, it debuted its first three vehicles under a new "Foxtron" brand: a Model C compact, a Model T urban bus, and this, the Model E sedan, jointly developed with Pininfarina. Roughly pitched alongside the Tesla Model S, the Model E will make around 750 horsepower and accelerate from 0-100 km/h (0-62 mph) in around 2.8 seconds. Range per charge will be around 750 km (466 miles), so it's unlikely to constrain most drivers.

OK, it's not the sexiest thing that's ever had Pininfarina written on it
OK, it's not the sexiest thing that's ever had Pininfarina written on it

The rear seat is designed to "transform into a dedicated mobile office," although it's unclear at this stage exactly what that means beyond a swiveling touchscreen and a front passenger seat that folds right forward so you can put things on it.

The exterior uses some fancy light surfaces to "communicate with the outside world," the doors will unlock via facial recognition, the dash is giant and colorful, the mirrors are cameras, and that's about all the company's willing to divulge at this point.

White leather interior with a generous set of dash screens
White leather interior with a generous set of dash screens

Let's call a spade a shovel; this ain't the prettiest thing that's ever had Pininfarina written on the side of it. But it's tidy enough, and even if this does look like an incredibly audacious play from a company without prior experience in the grueling world of automotive, it'd be a brave man that laid a bet against a massive company like this one with such extensive experience in high-end electronics.

Check out a video below.

Discover the Model E luxury sedan, the electric car designed by Pininfarina for Hon Hai (Foxconn)

Source: Foxconn (Hon Hai)

View gallery - 6 images
6 comments
6 comments
BlueOak
Smart for a (deep pockets) EV startup to spend the $ with a recognized design firm in recognition that amateurs style vehicles at their own peril.

Faraday Future had many challenges, first and foremost, a founder who was his own worst enemy. But that cluttered and unattractive FF 91design didn’t help. Just as with the bland and droopy LUCID.
DavidB
Please follow up with a story about the Model C! I’m well past ready for someone to make an affordable small EV (two doors, even two seats) with good figures for range and acceleration.
Daishi
EV auto makers are more like tech companies than traditional auto companies. Some early problems (motor and battery efficiency) have been mostly solved and the hardest part left is charging and battery fires which tech companies are probably more qualified to tackle than the traditional auto industry. Safety is an area you would expect traditional auto companies to carry an advantage but that has not been the reality and the rest is a rolling consumer electronics product.
CAVUMark
Did he say the car is elegant?
Aaron Cadle
Didn't Foxconn also buy up Byton recently, sounds like their going to try and be a big competitor in the EV market,
Let's hope they don't just go for the high end market because they will run out of customers quickly.
Adrian Akau
An update is needed later on.