On April 22, 2014, Elon Musk personally handed over the Model S car keys to the first batch of 8 Tesla owners in China. One of them was Li Xiang, then President of Autohome. A few months later, Li Xiang was right. The evaluation given by this luxury car with a price of nearly one million is: "The power and suspension are amazing, and the interior and seats are stale."
A year later, Li wanted to leave the car home and founded a company called "Chehejia" and decided to build his own car. After experiencing the failure of the SEV product line of low-speed electric vehicles and the financial chain almost broke, Li Xiang still built the car, which is called the ideal ONE.
Although Ideal ONE follows the "non-mainstream" program extension route of new car power, it has been favored by many Internet entrepreneurial stars. The founder of Meituan Wang Xing said that "Ideal ONE co-driver beats Tesla." Luo Yonghao even stated that this is "the best car in the world that can be bought at this price."
Seventeen months after the delivery of the first Ideal ONE, on the evening of May 25, 2021, Ideal Car released the 2021 Ideal ONE.
Compared with the original 5 billion support for five years, the ideal current cash reserve is close to 30 billion. At the same time, the ideal is also facing a wave of new cars. Technology and Internet companies such as Xiaomi, Huawei, and Apple are all gearing up, not just trying to get a share of the new car field.
In February of this year, Li Xiang proposed to achieve the No. 1 market share of China's smart electric vehicles by 2025, which means that ideally every model to be released in the future cannot be missed.
In this context, what improvements and optimizations the new ideal ONE brings are more worthy of attention, and we may be able to measure how far the ideal "ideal" is.
The new ideal ONE released: longer battery life, greatly improved assisted driving capabilities
The 2021 Ideal ONE has not changed much in the design of the older model. The color scheme has added Deep Green special edition pearl paint and Tech Blue special edition cold light paint. Other changes are mainly concentrated on the new China grid design, L-shaped turn signal and other details. .
In terms of interior, the new car will be equipped with a touch-sensitive steering wheel, the door panel also adopts a new design, and is equipped with a frameless inner rearview mirror, canceling the old 7-seater layout, and the entire system adopts a 6-seater design. The size of the new model is 5030 x 1960 x 1785mm, and the length and height are improved compared to the old model.
To say that the biggest upgrade of this 2021 ideal ONE is the assisted driving system. The 2021 model comes standard with a full-stack, self-developed ideal AD advanced assisted driving system, and the ability of NOA to assist driving with navigation has been greatly improved.
The 2021 Ideal ONE is equipped with an 800W pixel camera, the recognition accuracy reaches 4K level, the millimeter wave radar has increased to 5, and it uses two world-first Horizon dual "Journey 3" autopilot dedicated chips, which is more powerful than the previous model. Doubled.
Thanks to stronger hardware and self-developed perception algorithms, the 2021 Ideal ONE can effectively identify traffic lights, pile barrels, and road shoulders, and achieve more accurate up and down ramps and automatic acceleration under partially closed road conditions. The function of merging, and has a vision-based automatic parking assist system.
It is worth mentioning that this ideal AD advanced driving assistance system, including the NOA navigation assisted driving system, does not require additional payment and will be pushed to 2021 users through OTA at the end of September 2021.
Another major upgrade is the extended range system. The 2021 model uses a new permanent magnet + 40.5 KWh battery pack, and when the NEDC comprehensive mileage is increased to 1080 km, the fuel consumption is controlled at 6.05L/100km.
Li Xiang described Extended Range Electric as a super charging treasure for smart electric vehicles. It can not only charge its own motors, but also provide "support" for other electric vehicles. While promoting the ideal ONE "no mileage anxiety", it seems that it is also Made a ridicule of friends.
In addition, the voice recognition of ideal classmates has also been upgraded. Ideal indicates that this is currently the only intelligent voice cockpit that provides "full vehicle free dialogue function". Users can achieve continuous free dialogue at any position in the car, automatically identify effective commands, and be visible. Say wait for advanced features.
In terms of price, the price of the three special edition color schemes of the 2021 Ideal ONE is 348,000, while the ordinary color model is priced at 338,000, while the national unified retail price of the old model is 328,000.
Has the short board of assisted driving ability been made up?
Whether it is a new car force or a traditional car company, it has become the consensus of the industry to focus on electrification, intelligent polishing of products, and transformation and upgrading. Competition in the automotive industry has gradually shifted from competing for hardware to competing for data and systems, and "software-defined cars" has become the new mantra.
The intelligence is most directly reflected in the experience of on-board systems and assisted driving functions. Compared with the two new car forces of Tesla and Weilai Xiaopeng, the assisted driving ability of Ideal ONE has always had no advantage, and it is also a small model of this model. Regret.
It can be seen from the configuration of the perception system that the old ideal ONE car is equipped with 5 cameras, while Tesla has 7 cameras. The whole car is equipped with one Bosch fifth-generation forward millimeter wave radar, while Weilai has five.
▲Picture from: CITIC Securities
In addition, at the computing level, the MobileyeEyeQ4 chip used in the old ideal ONE has significantly lagging behind the chips carried by new energy vehicle companies such as Tesla, Weilai, and Xiaopeng. These chips largely determine the state of the vehicle. The level of assisted driving performance such as behavioral decision-making and vehicle control.
▲Picture from: CITIC Securities
In the No. 42 garage's evaluation of the driving assistance functions of Tesla Model 3, Weilai EC6, Xiaopeng P7, and the old Ideal ONE, the comprehensive score of the old Ideal ONE is the lowest. The main gap is reflected in Cornering ability, stability in special scenes and automatic lane change assistance.
Ideal is obviously aware of this problem. The biggest upgrade of the 2021 Ideal ONE released this time is the assisted driving experience. In addition to adding millimeter-wave radar and upgrading the camera, it is also the first to be equipped with a Horizon dual "Journey 3" chip. Its computing power is Two times the MobileyeEyeQ4 chip will greatly enhance driving assistance functions such as advanced driver assistance systems, driver monitoring systems, in-vehicle monitoring systems, and automatic parking assistance systems.
At the same time, Ideal Auto also announced that it will jointly build a dedicated layer for car owners with the high-definition map of Gaode Maps to help ideal car owners obtain traffic information within the range of the high-definition map more quickly, and further enhance the navigation assisted driving experience.
The test video of the 2021 Ideal ONE also exposed from Garage 42 shows that the old Ideal ONE could not pass the most difficult and most curved "Devil's Bend", and the 2021 model can pass easily and smoothly.
▲ Picture from: Garage 42
But even with the "Journey 3" chip, the ideal of computing power has not fully caught up with the other new car-making forces. However, the new SUV codenamed X01, which will be released next year, will use Orin X, the most powerful product in the Orin series of computing platforms. Ideal will also be the world's first car company equipped with this series of chips.
Wang Kai , CTO of Ideal Cars , also stated that this new model will reserve a comprehensive hardware interface for L4 autonomous driving, and Ideal ONE can also be upgraded through OTA upgrades. I believe that we will see Ideal in the field of autonomous driving next year. A more comprehensive answer sheet.
Moreover, the ideal car, which has always been known for its "stingy" in terms of cost control and R&D investment, has also increased its investment in autonomous driving.
Ideal Auto CFO Li Tie revealed that the ideal R&D expenses this year will increase to at least RMB 3 billion, and will reach RMB 6 billion per year within three years, of which more than half will be used for research and development related to autonomous driving. At the same time, the current ideal autonomous driving R&D team has more than 300 people, compared with 30 people a year ago.
Last month, Li Xiang also announced on Weibo that the assisted driving and automatic driving of all models of Ideal Auto are fully equipped as standard, and software activation and subscription fees will not be charged.
At present, Tesla, NIO, and Xiaopeng have all made a lot of income through the optional or subscription of assisted driving software, and the ideal choice is free of charge. It may be because they hope to quickly accumulate more autopilot data and upgrade iteratively. The ideal of catching up with the function of autonomous driving is crucial.
Although the ideal car is a step behind its competitors in its autonomous driving function, Li Xiang is full of confidence. At the end of the official Weibo that the ideal car's automatic driving function is free of charge, he puts down this sentence:
Our self-developed autonomous driving system (standard with 508Tops computing power and lidar) will be able to compete head-on with Huawei and Tesla next year.
To sell 1.6 million cars in 2025, how far is the ideal "ideal"?
Compared with other new car forces, the ideal car so far only has the ideal ONE model, which seems to be slightly thinner. However, this model also brought good sales results to Ideal.
Delivery of Ideal ONE only started in December 2019. Nearly 33,000 units were delivered in 2020, more than any of Weilai and Xiaopeng, and currently more than 55,000 units have been delivered. At the same time, Ideal Auto's net profit turned positive for the first time in the fourth quarter of 2020, and it has also become the first domestic new automaker to achieve quarterly profit.
▲ In May 2020, the 10,000th ideal ONE rolled off the assembly line. Picture from: Ideal Car
However, the ideal ONE has encountered many doubts since its launch. The first thing to bear is its extended range route. Unlike Weilai Xiaopeng and other pure circuit lines that rely solely on battery power, extended range electric vehicles are equipped with both engine and battery. It does not directly provide power, but generates electricity to the drive motor, thereby realizing pure electric drive.
Because the fuel engine can act as a "power bank" for the battery, the extended-range electric vehicle has an advantage over pure electric vehicles in terms of endurance. But at the same time, power will be wasted during the charging process, which will increase fuel consumption.
Li Xiang once said that the reason why Ideal ONE adopts the program extension program is because the current battery cost is high, and the charging infrastructure is not perfect, the user experience of the pure electric solution is not good, and the main marketing slogan of Ideal ONE is also "No Range anxiety.”
However, with the advancement of battery technology, various car companies are also actively deploying charging equipment. In addition, Shanghai recently stipulated that the purchase of extended-range electric vehicles cannot be accompanied by new energy licenses, which will undoubtedly weaken the competitiveness of Ideal ONE. Ideals can no longer rely on an extended-range electric car to go to the end.
In the plan for the next ten years announced by Li Xiang in February, in addition to the extended-range electric platform, a 400-kilowatt ultra-fast charging high-voltage pure electric platform that supplements 300-500 kilometers of battery life in ten minutes will be launched. According to "LatePost" news , the ideal pure electric vehicle project has been approved and will be launched in 2023 at the earliest.
In addition, Li Xiang’s internal letter also mentioned a seemingly radical goal-to occupy 20% of the Chinese smart electric vehicle market by 2025, ranking first in the Chinese market; by 2030, it will take 25%. % Of the global market share, ranking first in the world.
Li Xiang predicts that China will sell more than 8 million smart electric vehicles in 2025, which means that it will ideally sell 1.6 million vehicles in 2025. Although the current annual sales of China's top five are all over one million, no car company has a market share of more than 20% in the field of new energy or fuel vehicles.
Li Xiang believes that only by reaching such a goal can you get a ticket for 2030. There are not many car companies that directly call out such a goal like Ideal, but the founders of the new car field have basically expressed something like "May be welcomed in the next 10 years. Come to a big reshuffle" view.
After Xiaomi announced to build a car in March this year, Lei Jun and the founders of the three new car-building forces Li Xiang, Li Bin and He Xiaopeng, and BYD Chairman Wang Chuanfu took a group photo at a party. Lei Jun expressed emotion:
10-20 years later, when smart electric vehicles are at the end of the competition, it would be great if the 5 final "ship tickets" happened to be taken by 5 people present.
Ideals may not think so. Ideal Motors President Yanan Shen mentioned in an interview with "LatePost" recently that by 2030, the Chinese market may be occupied by three car companies, two of which are likely to be Tesla and Apple. Ideally, Hope to become the third one.
However, there are obviously not only ideals with the same lofty "ideal".
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