Just now, Huawei officially released the first sedan of its smart car selection business, Zhijie S7, with a total of 4 models:
- Zhijie S7 Pro, priced at 249,800 yuan
- Zhijie S7 Max, priced at 289,800 yuan
- Zhijie S7 Max+, priced at 319,800 yuan
- Zhijie S7 Max RS, priced at 349,800 yuan
In terms of battery life, Smart World S7 is equipped with Huawei's new "Whale" 800V high-voltage battery platform. It can be charged for 15 minutes using Huawei's fully liquid-cooled super fast charge, which can replenish energy for 430 kilometers. The CLTC comprehensive battery life reaches 855km.
After briefly introducing the basic information, let’s talk about it in detail based on actual experience.
The "difference between appearance and inside" of Zhijie S7
It seems that the Zhijie S7 is an executive-class sedan.
With a length of nearly 5 meters, a wheelbase of nearly 3 meters, and a width of nearly 2 meters, the size of the Smart World S7 fully reaches or even exceeds the level of a traditional executive-class sedan.
But compared with the representatives of executive-class sedans – the Mercedes-Benz E-Class and BMW 5 Series, the Smart World S7 is even lower, only 1461mm, which is really not easy for a pure electric sedan. Coupled with the integrated One-Box body shape, the entire vehicle achieves an ultra-low wind resistance of 0.203Cd.
In terms of external styling, Huawei has obviously learned the lesson of the Wenjie M7 that collided with the Dongfeng Scenery iX7. The Zhijie S7 has a very strong design originality and is not similar to the "half-mother" Chery Xingtu Xingyuan.
▲The top is AITO Wenjie M7, the bottom is Dongfeng Fengguang ix7, pictures from: Jidian
▲Chery Star Era
The Zhijie S7 adopts the new family design of Huawei Smart Car. The most obvious feature is its headlights. Huawei integrates the light groups, air knives, side air intake curtains and other components into the same element, extending around the horizontal line at the visual center of gravity. Semi-open curved wing-like silhouette.
In terms of function, the ultra-wide-angle lighting system of the Smart World S7 increases the width of the headlights 5 meters in front from 25 meters wide to 50 meters, but Huawei did not mention the specific illumination at the press conference.
The horizontal water cut line on the side of the Zhijie S7 body is also a manifestation of the new generation of family-oriented "skyline design". The straight and penetrating water cut divides the entire body into two parts. Combined with the upper and lower color separation design, the visual effect of the whole vehicle is more elegant and slender. At the same time, it also brings better visibility to the low body.
▲ Huawei hides the tailgate opening button in the letter "D"
Sitting on it, the Zhijie S7 is also an executive-class car.
At the press conference, Yu Chengdong emphasized the advantages of the Smart World S7 in terms of field of view, saying that "the innovative yacht cockpit design brings a super wide field of view." Judging from the actual experience of Dongchehui, the field of view of Zhijie S7 is indeed quite impressive.
On the Zhijie S7, Huawei has moved the highest point (point C) of the rear end of the front cover forward to make the driver's field of vision wider. The bulges at the left and right ends of the front cover can also make it easier for the driver to grasp the distance when passing on a narrow road.
The transparency of the Zhijie S7 cabin also comes from the low and flat instrument panel. The distant 12.3-inch instrument screen is closer to the driver's line of sight, and the olive-shaped steering wheel with a full feel will not block it. More importantly, unlike Tesla's Yoke steering wheel, Huawei retains the upper edge of the steering wheel, and the new steering wheel does not affect driving.
At the Zhijie S7 pre-sale conference held at the beginning of the month, Yu Chengdong said that the instrument panel of the Zhijie S7 can also "turn into a workbench in seconds" when mobile work is needed. A laptop can be placed on the passenger side for operation. If it is a Huawei-branded laptop, , and can also be interconnected with the Hongmeng cockpit in the car.
However, from the actual experience, only the interconnection experience between the notebook and the cockpit is unsatisfactory, and it is not practical to place the notebook on the dashboard. For workers who need mobile office, it is better to put the notebook on the lap.
Comfortable, but not comfortable
Compared with working, the co-pilot of Zhijie S7 is obviously more suitable for enjoyment.
Zero-gravity seats have always been Huawei's specialty. As early as 2022, Huawei brought this configuration to the Wenjie M7. Subsequently, there was a "zero-gravity seat trend" in the car circle. However, although each company advertises "zero gravity", there are still considerable differences between them, and Huawei's zero gravity seats are always more comfortable.
The Zhijie S7 co-pilot's zero-gravity seat supports one-button suspension. The four-way electric leg rest has a length of 280mm and a maximum adjustable range of 61°. The seat can be adjusted in a total of 18 directions and 10-point massage. Conventional ventilation and heating are natural. No absences either.
What's more critical is your lying posture. After entering the zero-gravity mode, the front end of the seat cushion is raised, and the weight of the body is evenly distributed on the back, buttocks, and legs, making the posture more relaxed.
It is obvious that the Zhijie S7 attaches great importance to the comfort of the seats, which is also reflected in the rear row.
The rear seats of the Zhijie S7 are wide and thick, with just the right height and seat softness. Huawei calls them "Silk Cloud Seats." In addition, despite its short height, the seat height and legroom are comparable to those of the AION S, which is the king of the online ride-hailing world. Coupled with a completely flat floor, easy-to-hand control buttons and an expandable rear screen, the back row performance of the Smart World S7 is truly outstanding.
However, after driving it, you will find that the Zhijie S7 cannot reach the level of an executive-class sedan.
Let’s talk about configuration first. Zhijie S7 is equipped with an adaptive air suspension system, using CDC electronically controlled damping system and air suspension system. Huawei has also added a road preview function to it, which can scan the road surface in real time through the front camera and radar, and adjust the situation in advance. The road condition information within 150 meters is transmitted to the ECU, and the CDC's damping is dynamically adjusted.
Huawei said that with the cooperation of this system, the Smart World S7 can reduce road impact by 15%. In addition, it can control front and rear torque transfer through DATS dynamic torque adjustment and adaptive slip rate, improving ride comfort by 40%. Ensure smoothness and comfort when passing speed bumps and bumpy roads.
But in last week's test drive, the Zhijie S7 didn't feel like that. The vibration filtering performance of the chassis did not reach the level of an executive-class car. Instead, it was more like a sports car, with tough suspension, direct vibration transmission, and no noise. Isolation is also more modest.
However, from another perspective, if you have some requirements for driving, Zhijie S7 can also provide you with a certain sense of sportiness. In "Sports +" mode, the instrument can display G value, instantaneous power consumption, output power, torque and front-to-rear wheel power distribution ratio, bringing you multi-dimensional vehicle information.
On the other hand, Zhijie S7 also adds an active voice with pragmatism.
In the field of traditional racing cars and performance cars, drivers often combine engine sound and gearbox gear to estimate vehicle speed – the active sound of the Smart S7 can also play a similar role.
Compared with the simulated sound waves of most current new energy pure electric models, which are less realistic, exaggerated, and heavily electronic, the active sound waves of the Intelligent World S7 can achieve a certain degree of "sound recognition".
In terms of power system, Zhijie S7 is equipped with a new generation of HUAWEI DriveONE 800V silicon carbide platform, with a total power of 365kW and a torque of 679N·m. The official acceleration time from 0 to 100km/h is 3.3 seconds. Brembo four-piston calipers and perforated brake discs combined with Michelin PS EV bring a 100-0km/h braking distance of 33.5 meters.
In short, although it sits averagely, the Zhijie S7 is a medium-to-large sedan that drives well.
The gap between ideal and reality
After talking about human driving, let’s talk about smart driving.
AEB is just a small case, a piece of cake. (piece of cake)
On November 9, Huawei held a press conference for Huawei’s smart travel solutions and also launched pre-sales for the Smart World S7. At this press conference, Yu Chengdong announced in a high-profile manner that the Smart World S7 will be the first to have unmanned valet parking, support active obstacle avoidance, and be available on call.
But at the time, Huawei did not demonstrate this feature in detail, and the public could only hold back their curiosity.
However, just a few days ago, a video of Huawei's driverless valet parking went viral in major group chats. The Zhijie S7 in the video skillfully completed a series of operations such as yielding to pedestrians, reversing to avoid traffic, meeting vehicles in narrow lanes, automatic parking, and automatic pick-up in a driverless state. Dongchehui experienced this function last week, and its actual performance was basically the same as the video.
Let’s talk about some things not mentioned in the video.
This parking and driving function is a bit like an "upgraded version" of Xpeng's memory parking. Before using it, users still need to manually take the Zhijie S7 through the route. The difference is that when the parking space is occupied, Zhijie S7 can actively search for available parking spaces, while Xiaopeng needs to manually select available vehicles on the memorized route in advance.
When the user activates the parking agent on their mobile phone, they can see the real-time picture in front of the vehicle on their mobile phone to observe whether the vehicle has successfully completed parking. However, judging from the current experience, the frame rate of the picture is low and the lag is serious. The on-site engineer said that it will continue to be optimized in the future.
Another area that needs optimization is autonomous pick-up.
In the scene described by Huawei, the Smart World S7 supports "car to find people". When you come out of the mall, you only need to click on a location on the garage map that has been scanned in advance, and the car will come to pick you up, achieving "direction". Fight wherever you go." However, in the current App, users cannot check their own location and it is easy to "lost themselves" in the basement.
The good news is that the on-site factory engineer said that "this function is easy to implement, just use the mobile phone to locate it." The bad news is that although the scene described by Huawei is very beautiful, due to domestic regulations, Huawei will not be able to implement this function in the short term. Push to users.
Huawei said that the Beta version of this feature will be gradually opened in some parking lots in seven cities: Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Suzhou, Chongqing, and Dongguan in the first quarter of next year.
Hold "soul" in your own hands
At the opening of the Zhijie S7 conference, Yu Chengdong once again introduced the three models of Huawei's automotive business.
The first one provides standardized components, such as Huawei's MDC intelligent driving computing platform and motors.
The second one is Huawei Inside full-stack solution. Provide car companies with full-stack smart driving solutions including smart driving application software, computing platforms, and sensors.
The third type is Huawei Smart Car Selection. Utilize Huawei's experience in brand channel retail, marketing, and product definition accumulated in the consumer electronics business to help car companies define better products and assist car companies in all aspects of design, experience, and marketing. This model now has a new name: Hongmeng Zhixing.
At the 2023 Guangzhou Auto Show that just concluded not long ago, the most popular booth was undoubtedly Hongmeng Zhixing. Huawei, which holds the world of knowledge and intelligence, and "does not build cars" has successfully become a top player in the automotive industry. Yu Chengdong confirmed the cooperation with JAC and BAIC in today's press conference, saying "there are still two industries waiting for you."
As for Changan Automobile, the only remaining partner of Huawei Inside mode, it has also made new moves recently.
On November 25, Huawei and Changan Automobile signed an "Investment Cooperation Memorandum". After negotiation, Huawei plans to establish a new company to focus on the research and development, production, sales and services of intelligent driving systems and incremental components for intelligent connected vehicles. According to the cooperation intention, Changan Automobile and related parties will invest in the company, with a proportion of no more than 40%, and jointly support the future development of the company with Huawei.
In addition to Changan Automobile, Hongmeng Zhixing's four partners have all received invitations to join the new joint venture. Yu Chengdong also expressed at the press conference that he hopes FAW Group can join them.
The "new company" they call is actually Huawei's original automotive BU. The establishment of the new joint venture can be said to be Huawei's biggest strategic adjustment since it laid out its automotive business.
As of the end of last year, in the three years since the establishment of Auto BU, Huawei had invested a total of US$3 billion, approximately RMB 21.5 billion, and its R&D team had reached a scale of 7,000 people. Huge amounts of research and development have been carried out in aspects such as car cloud and so on.
As a result, not many car companies bought it. According to data disclosed by Huawei, in the first half of 2023, Huawei’s smart car solution revenue was only 1 billion yuan.
SAIC wants to hold its soul in its own hands, and it is unacceptable for SAIC to cooperate with third-party companies like Huawei for autonomous driving.
Chen Hong, chairman of SAIC Motor, expressed the sentiments of many car company leaders at the shareholders’ meeting. The unwillingness to be reduced to a shell is the reason why they are unwilling to cooperate with Huawei.
But with the independence of CheBU and the opening up of its equity, this situation may change. Auto BU no longer represents Huawei, but has become a complete supplier. If auto companies are willing, they can even take shares –
How can it be considered selling one’s soul when using one’s own technology?
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