These Are the Wildest EVs Unveiled at China’s Biggest Auto Show

The likes of BYD, Zeekr, and Xiaomi all showed off new models — here are some of the most interesting vehicles on offer.

The Zeekr Mix


Zeekr Mix

The Zeekr Mix.

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Zeekr might be only three years old, but the company has made a name for itself with its quirky EVs.

At the auto show, the EV firm unveiled the Zeekr Mix, an electric multi-purpose vehicle with swiveling chairs that allow it to transform into a small room when parked.

The company, owned by Chinese auto giant Geely, recently released its all-new Zeekr 001 model, equipped with battery technology that can go from 10% to 80% charged in just 11 minutes.

BYD targets high-end customers


BYD Yangwang U8

The Yangwang U8.

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By far the biggest name in China’s EV market is BYD, the Warren Buffett-backed firm that is probably giving Elon Musk sleepless nights.

The EV upstart has become known for its cheap vehicles, such as the $11,000 Seagull, but the company was showing off its more high-end models in Beijing.

That includes the Yangwang U8, the latest version of which, the Off-road Master Edition, was unveiled in Beijing.

This 1.1 million yuan ($150,000) SUV is capable of floating for up to 30 minutes and turning 360 degrees on the spot like a tank — and customers can even add a built-in drone for an extra 100,000 yuan ($14,000).

BYD also announced a new cheap electric hatchback as it looks to squeeze Tesla even further. The Ocean-M hatchback will be released later this year and will cost between 150,000 yuan to 200,000 yuan ($20,00 to $27,000).

Xiaomi brings its Tesla rival


Xiaomi SU7

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One of the biggest draws of the auto show was the SU7, an electric SUV built by smartphone maker Xiaomi.

The EV promises to offer a range of 500 miles and a battery that can be fully charged within 15 minutes, according to Xiaomi, and drivers will have access to the company’s next-gen autonomous driving features — all for a price point that starts at 215,900 yuan ($30,00).

It’s not surprising that the EV appeared to attract huge queues when it went on display at the Beijing conference. Xiaomi has said that the company has already received more than 75,000 orders for the SUV, with deliveries beginning in March.

European automakers join the party


VW ID-Code

The VW ID.Code.

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Not to be outdone by their Chinese counterparts, Western automakers also had a large presence at the Beijing auto show.

Volkswagen, once China’s largest car brand before being overtaken by local rivals, showed off its ID.Code 01 concept EV, which features a built-in robot that vacuums the car when it’s not being used.

German firm Mercedes, meanwhile, unveiled an electric version of its iconic G-Wagon off-roader, which the company said would launch in China later this year.

Xpeng shows off its flying car


Xpeng flying car

The Xpeng Aeroht.

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The number of companies trying to make it in China’s EV market — at least 123, according to one auto consultant — has seen some firms branch out in unexpected directions.

One is Chinese EV maker Xpeng with its AeroHT flying car prototype that went on display in Beijing.

The AeorHT has been in development for a decade, and the affiliate company behind it is reportedly close to receiving regulatory approval to fly — but no price or release date has been announced yet, so may be a while before the AeroHT dominates China’s skies.