Taiwan’s Foxconn unveiled its first three electric vehicle prototypes, underscoring ambitious plans to diversify away from its role of building consumer electronics for Apple and tech firms. The vehicles such as an SUV, a sedan and a bus were made by Foxtron. This is a venture between Foxconn and Taiwanese car maker Yulon Motor Co Ltd. Foxtron Vice Chairman Tso Chi-sen said that he hoped electric vehicles would be worth a trillion Taiwan dollars to Foxconn in five years.
Hon Hai Precision Industry, one of the world’s biggest electronics contract manufacturers aims to become a major player in the global EV market. It first mentioned its EV ambitions and has moved relatively quickly. Hon Hai is ready and it is no longer the new kid in town, said Foxconn Chairman Liu Young-way. The sedan, which was jointly developed with Italian design firm Pininfarina, will be sold by an unspecified carmaker outside Taiwan.
The bus, which will carry a Foxtron badge, will start running in several cities in southern Taiwan. So far Foxconn has made a pretty good progress, according to Daiwa Capital Markets techies. Foxconn has also set itself a target of providing components for 10% of the world’s EVs. A successful push by contract assemblers into the car industry has the potential to bring in a slew of new players. This undermines the business models of traditional car companies. Chinese automaker Geely this year also laid out plans to become a major contract manufacturer. Industry watchers are closely watching for clues of which firms might build Apple’s electric car. This tech giant wants to launch a car by 2024, Apple has not disclosed specific plans.