Xiaomi SU7 blurs the lines between car and smartphone
Smartphone giant’s first EV gets a huge range and the latest tech
You might have heard of Xiaomi for its range of smartphones, but the Chinese giant has decided it’s ready to make a giant leap into the automotive sphere. It’s revealed its first-ever car model which takes the form of a slinky-looking saloon to rival the likes of the Porsche Taycan.
Badged the Xiaomi SU7, this all-new entry into the high-end electric sports saloon space seeks to establish itself with a torrent of technology – just as you’d expect from a firm that’s more familiar with taking on Apple iPhones than Hyundai Ioniqs.
No surprise is the SU7’s giant 16.3-inch central touchscreen which has more than a whiff of the Tesla Model S unit about it. Xiaomi claims this offers a 3K resolution for pin-sharp graphics, as well as a similar Snapdragon processor to the ones it uses in its POCO line-up of smartphones, which should provide fast responses to your inputs.
More impressive, however, is the Xiaomi SU7’s expansive 57-inch head-up display which, from our knowledge, will be the largest ever such unit to be fitted to a production car. This can display a plethora of information, including sat-nav maps, and sits above a rotating 7.1-inch digital instrument cluster.
If that’s not enough screen real estate for you? Well, the front seats both feature back mounts for tablet devices, meaning passengers in the back can stream content and even link up with the car’s infotainment system for a more seamless experience.
Like Xiaomi’s smartphones, the SU7 is powered by a lithium ion battery, albeit a much larger 101kWh unit. This provides a range of up to 497 miles depending on specification, although it’s worth pointing out that this figure is rated via the Chinese light-duty vehicle test cycle (CLTC) – you can expect this figure to drop somewhat if/when the SU7 is subjected to more stringent European WLTP tests.
Xiaomi has showcased two launch models: entry-level cars will utilise a single, rear-mounted electric motor producing 294bhp and can reach 62mph in 5.4 seconds. The range-topping Xiaomi SU7 Max is sure to grab all the headlines, however, as its dual-motor, four-wheel drive setup outputs 664bhp and is capable of 0-62mph in a Taycan and Lotus Emeya-rivalling 2.78 seconds.
Of course, driving fast will quickly take its toll on the battery; thankfully the SU7’s 800v architecture allows for ultra-rapid charging speeds, enabling 137 miles of range to be added in just five minutes – provided you find a powerful enough charging station, that is.
If you’d rather be driven than drive yourself, the Xiaomi SU7 is fitted with a LiDAR sensor, like the ones found in the Volvo EX90 and Lotus Eletre. This can scan the road for obstacles and works alongside up to eleven cameras as part of the brand’s Xiaomi Pilot Autonomous Driving system.
Xiaomi is keen to showcase the SU7’s cabin space, which apparently surpasses that of the equivalent Tesla Model S. The slinky shape provides a low drag coefficient of just 0.195Cd but the SU7 still boasts a 517-litre boot, in addition to 105 litres of cargo space under the bonnet in the form of a ‘frunk’.
The Xiaomi SU7 is due to go on sale in China towards the end of 2024. It’s unknown at this stage whether the electric super saloon will make its way to Europe, let alone the UK, but it is worth acknowledging how rapidly this sector of the market is growing, with models like the Polestar 5 and Aehra saloon close on the horizon.
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