While we know that Xiaomi plans to enter the electric car market, an autonomous prototype has already been spotted in China, with a LiDAR sensor on the roof.
Last year, Xiaomi officially announced that it was entering the electric car market with its new subsidiary Xiaomi Automobile, spearheaded by CEO Lei Jun himself. While the Chinese manufacturer has already promised that we will see a prototype of its first electric car in the 3rd quarter of this year, it has already been seen on the roads in China.
Indeed, a Weibo user named Toxic Digital shared what appears to be the first image of Xiaomi’s electric car. On the side of the vehicle, we can read ” Xiaomi self-driving test confirming the manufacturer’s intentions to compete with other players such as Tesla with its own autonomous vehicle. As a reminder, Xiaomi has planned to invest no less than 10 billion dollars in its new automotive division over the next ten years.
The Xiaomi Car uses a LiDAR sensor
As we can see on the roof of the car, it uses a LiDAR sensor for its automated driving, a much less discreet system than the Tesla Vision, these 8 360-degree cameras around Elon Musk’s vehicles. The billionaire has always been against the use of LiDAR sensors, which he describes as “expensive” and “useless”. We imagine that this LiDAR sensor should be equipped directly in the car on the final version.
Xiaomi’s car looks suspiciously like a Chinese electric car, the Han EV from automaker BYD. This electric sedan offers a range of around 400 to 500 km, and BYD is talking about a 0 to 100 in 3.9 seconds. A spokesperson for the manufacturer quickly confirmed that it was not their prototype. “This is only for our self-driving technology tests. This is not our electric vehicle“.
In the past, Xiaomi has already unveiled the price of its future electric racing car. The manufacturer plans to sell the car to a price between 100,000 and 300,000 yuan, i.e. between 14,500 and 44,000 euros. It would therefore be one of the most affordable electric sedans on the market.