Chinese electronics giant Xiaomi is planning to venture into the automobile sector. The company is believed to working on building its own smart car. It is developing a new concept for a smart car. The development is seen as a strategic decision by the company. It has so far not revealed specific details related to the smart car. The Beijing-based firm is yet to determine the path to take the concept forward. Its CEO Lei Jun will directly head the project. Jun co-founded Xiaomi in 2010. Xiaomi is today one of the largest electronics companies in the world. It manufactures smartphones and consumer electronics. Jun took the company to new heights and his leadership will be crucial in materializing the new project.
Jun visited the United States twice in 2013. He had met Tesla CEO Elon Musk. Tesla is today’s world’s largest electric automaker. Jun’s meetings with Musk have finally yielded some results. He has grown interests in a smart car. The timing of Xiaomi’s entry into the auto sector is significant. The electric vehicle market is gaining popularity worldwide. Electric vehicles are projected as an alternative to vehicles that run on fossil fuels. They are greener than conventional vehicles. The fast adoption of electric vehicles will cut the dependency on fossil fuels and also check the rising levels of air pollution. Xiaomi’s diversification is likely to be influenced by the stagnation of the smartphone market.
Xiaomi is not the only electronics company that is planning to build a smart car. Another Chinese multinational Huawei has already announced to develop a smart car. The company has said that it is partnering with Hicar & BAIC for the project. The Chinese market has seen a demand for smart vehicles in the last few years. The government offers incentives to companies involved in the manufacturing of electric vehicles. Tesla has already set up a manufacturing plant in Shanghai. In another related development, iPhone maker Apple is also working on an electric car concept. The project is currently undergoing research and development.