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Explained: Electronics maker Foxconn’s electric vehicles plan

Foxconn Technology Group, which is the world’s biggest contract manufacturer for electronics, unveiled three prototype electric vehicles on Monday.

Foxconn, Foxconn electric vehicles plan, Foxconn electric vehicles, Foxconn EV cars, electric vehicles, Indian ExpressOne of the electric cars unveiled by Foxconn is seen during a press event held in Taipei, Taiwan Monday, Oct. 18, 2021. (AP Photo/Wu Taijing)

Taiwanese electronics manufacturer Foxconn has unveiled three white-label electric vehicles in an effort to showcase its capabilities at a time when global smartphone makers like Apple and Xiaomi — which are Foxconn’s customers — have been working on coming out with their own EV models.

Foxconn’s announcement

Foxconn Technology Group, which is the world’s biggest contract manufacturer for electronics, unveiled three prototype electric vehicles on Monday (October 18).

The unveiling is being billed as Foxconn’s pitch to invite global vehicle original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) showcasing the company’s manufacturing capabilities in the EV segment.

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The sedans and SUV unveiled by Foxconn will be built for the company’s customers in the automotive segment instead of being sold under its own brand.

Foxconn, Foxconn electric vehicles plan, Foxconn electric vehicles, Foxconn EV cars, electric vehicles, Indian Express Foxconn announced Monday plans to produce electric cars for auto brands under a similar contract model. (AP Photo/Wu Taijing)

Vehicle manufacturing plans

The company announced that Taiwan’s Yulon Motors will be its first customer for electric vehicles manufacturing, but Foxconn’s plans to enter vehicle manufacturing have been in the works.

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Last month, the company agreed to an automotive manufacturing plant in Ohio from ailing startup Lordstown Motors for $230 million — giving it a booster shot in the areas of automobile assembly capacity, equipment and talent. The plant was previously run by General Motors.

According to Reuters, this follows plans to build another manufacturing facility in Thailand as well as a chipmaking plant in Taiwan. The aim is to be able to service auto customers and partners, which already include US-based Fisker and China’s Geely, closer to their end users.

Foxconn, Foxconn electric vehicles plan, Foxconn electric vehicles, Foxconn EV cars, electric vehicles, Indian Express Workers wipe the Foxtron Model C electric car after it unveiled in a press event held in Taipei, Taiwan, Monday, Oct. 18, 2021. (AP Photo/Wu Taijing)

Timing of announcement

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One of Foxconn’s biggest customers — iPhone maker Apple — has been secretly working on an autonomous automotive project codenamed Project Titan.

Apple is yet to formally announce the project or even decide on a manufacturing partner — however, CEO Tim Cook has hinted earlier that the company has been working on autonomy as a core technology.

Additionally, Chinese smartphone company Xiaomi Corp CEO Lei Jun announced on Tuesday that the company will mass-produce its own cars in the first half of 2024. In March, Xiaomi had said it would commit to investing $10 billion in a new electric car division over the next ten years.

And even though the company has announced its intent formally to get into EVs, like Apple, it is yet to reveal if it will produce the car independently or via partnership with a manufacturer.

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First published on: 19-10-2021 at 04:42:10 pm
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