Taiwan’s Hon Hai Technology Group (Foxconn) today introduced its first electric vehicle concepts under the Foxtron brand, a joint venture between the largest Apple iPhone producer and Taiwan’s biggest carmaker Yulon Motor.
Announced at the Hon Hai Tech Day 2021 event in Taipei, the three EVs are all based on Foxconn’s MIH electric vehicle open platform. They are the Model C recreational vehicle, Model E sedan, and Model T electric bus.
Right off the bat, we need to address the issue of these names. Chances are that Ford’s top management won’t be thrilled to hear them, and we’re willing to bet that Foxconn will hear from Dearborn’s legal department—remember when Ford blocked Tesla from using the Model E name?
Back to these new EVs, Foxconn says they underline its commitment to become “a global next-generation automotive manufacturer.”
According to Hon Hai founder Terry Gou, who appeared on stage driving the Model E (check out the entire presentation in the above video), the electric vehicle has become the world’s largest and most expensive smart electronic device. He believes Taiwan can play a key role in the development of EVs given the country’s strong capabilities in electronic manufacturing, including semiconductors, modules, precision machinery and operation.
Model C crossover
The first EV built on Hon Hai’s electric vehicle open platform is the Model C, marketed as “the intrinsically optimized electric SUV with pure electric nature.”
It is 4.64 meters (182.6 inches) long and has a wheelbase of 2.86 m (112.6 in), offering 5+2 seats and “plenty of storage space.” The Model C is said to deliver an extended range of 700 km (435 miles), a 0–100 km/h (62 mph) time of 3.8 seconds.
Foxconn also says the EV has a low 0.27 drag coefficient, high efficiency and intelligence, as well as “a reasonable price comparable to a fuel-powered car.”
Model E luxury sedan
Moving on to the Foxtron Model E, Foxconn describes it as “a technologically innovative luxury flagship sedan” for middle and high-end consumers. Jointly developed by Hon Hai and Italian design powerhouse Pininfarina, the Model E offers a power output of about 750 horsepower, 0–100 km acceleration in 2.8 seconds, and a 750-km (466-mile) range.
Inside, the EV flagship’s rear seat area can transform into a dedicated mobile office, with personal mobile devices seamlessly connected to the passenger car. This is said to enable smart applications like face recognition door opening, smart windows and vehicle and environment interfaces.
Model T bus
Finally, the Model T is a “stylish urban bus” envisioned as an intelligent transportation solution. Interestingly, Foxtron says the high rigid body design and protection meet Federal Transit Administration (FTA) regulations and standards, hinting at plans to sell it in the United States.
The battery is said to enable a range of more than 400 kilometers (248 miles) and can withstand temperatures of up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (204 degrees Celsius). The electric bus can reach a top speed of 120 km/h (75 mph). Foxconn said it will start delivering the bus to a local transportation provider next year.
As for the electric passenger car concepts, the tech giant will build them for automotive customers rather than under its own automotive brand. Bloomberg reports that the Model E sedan will be sold by an unspecified automaker outside Taiwan in the coming years (Fisker maybe?), while the Model C utility will be sold in Taiwan under one of Yulon's brands from 2023. It remains to be seen whether Foxconn will build any of these EVs at its newly acquired plant in Lordstown, Ohio.