Lei Jun, the founder and CEO of Beijing-based tech giant Xiaomi, posted a photo of himself and one of the firm’s automated driving test cars on Weibo, writing, “Has anyone seen our automated driving test car?”
As shown in the photo, it is a modified BMW 5 Series test vehicle, and the roof is equipped with lidar. In addition, the text on the side of the car body shows that the firm’s intelligent driving system may be named “Xiaomi Pilot.”
In addition, in July this year, photos of a Xiaomi road test car were exposed online, showing that besides the BMW 5 Series, there was also a Xiaomi automated driving test car modified from a BYD Han model.
On August 11, Lei Jun revealed the firm’s latest progress in vehicle manufacturing during his annual speech. It was mentioned that Xiaomi is conducting road tests all over China, and that 140 test vehicles are planned in the first phase.
Lei said that Xiaomi had officially started its electric vehicle manufacturing business for 500 days, which is advancing intensively, and its progress exceeds expectations. “Each module of the automobile industry is very complex, and automated driving is the most complex and has high technical density. Xiaomi chose automated driving as a key breakthrough point for smart cars.” He revealed that in the first phase of its R&D of automated driving, Xiaomi invested 3.3 billion yuan ($476.8 million), and the team had exceeded 500 people. Xiaomi‘s goal is to enter the first tier of companies in the industry in 2024.
Lei also released a video of the road test of automated driving technology, showing a Xiaomi automated driving test vehicle carrying out U-turns on an open road, automatic detours of accidents, recognition of pedestrians at crossings and roundabouts, automatic descent of continuous ramps, automated parking and charging. It shows that Xiaomi has L2 auxiliary driving technology, L4 automated valet parking technology, and pilot auxiliary driving functions in highways and urban roads.
However, Chengdu Business News interviewed industry insiders, who expressed that the video completely showed the status of the test car, covering three auxiliary driving scenario “urban roads, highways and parking,” but the automated driving technology can only reach the conventional level in the industry. “Considering that Xiaomi has only started vehicle manufacturing for 500 days, this progress can be regarded as fast, though,” said one source.