Hon Hai to make elec­tric car mar­ket head­way

The China Post - - LOCAL - BY JOHN LIU

Hon Hai Pre­ci­sion In­dus­try Co. (

), the world’s largest elec­tron­ics con­tract man­u­fac­turer, has set its eyes on the elec­tric ve­hi­cle mar­ket, and aims to be a lead­ing parts and com­po­nents sup­plier in the in­dus­try.

The ef­fort falls un­der Hon Hai’s grand plan to wade into the car in­dus­try. How­ever, the com­pany will not as­sem­ble whole cars or launch a car brand. In­stead, the fo­cus will be on pro­vid­ing a parts and com­po­nents plat­form.

The com­pany

is con­fi­dent

that with its in­vest­ment, elec­tric ve­hi­cle prices may be re­duced to US$15,000 in the fu­ture.

In­dus­try an­a­lysts are op­ti­mistic, and fore­cast fur­ther growth in sales in the next few years for elec­tric ve­hi­cles, hy­brid elec­tric ve­hi­cles and plug-in hy­brid elec­tric ve­hi­cles.

Wad­ing into the elec­tric ve­hi­cle field is a piv­otal link of the elec­tron­ics gi­ant’s am­bi­tion to ad­vance its pro­claimed “11 Pan­els, 3 Net­works, 2 Clouds” ob­jec­tive — an um­brella of tech­nolo­gies that in­cludes vir­tu­ally ev­ery de­vice with pan­els (smartphones, TVs, lap­tops, etc.), net­work ap­pli­ca­tions (like the In­ter­net Things) and cloud com­put­ing.

Hon Hai has a very clear devel­op­ment blue­print on elec­tric ve­hi­cles. The fo­cus will be on crit­i­cal parts and com­po­nents sup­ply.

Prepa­ra­tion Work Laid out

Al­ready

of

Hon Hai is re­port­edly look­ing into telem­at­ics, a field en­com­pass­ing telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions, ve­hic­u­lar tech­nolo­gies, road safety and trans­porta­tion, elec­tri­cal en­gi­neer­ing (sen­sors, in­stru­men­ta­tion, wire­less com­mu­ni­ca­tions, etc.) and com­puter science (mul­ti­me­dia, In­ter­net, etc.).

Or more specif­i­cally, the com­pany is in­ter­ested in en­ter­tain­ment-re­lated ap­pli­ca­tions. A cen­tral con­trol panel in the car can en­able shop­ping, plane ticket book­ing, or movie view­ing. It merges In­ter­net, In­ter­net of Things, and con­nected car con­cepts.

The com­pany is also ca­pa­ble of pro­duc­ing most elec­tric ve­hi­cle parts and com­po­nents. It has a lithium-ion bat­tery rein­vest­ment busi­ness, owns moulds for cast­ing and weld­ing, and pos­sesses alu­minum stamp­ing, glass pro­cess­ing and other tech­ni­cal know-how. It is also edg­ing to­ward cen­tral con­trol sys­tem and bat­tery mould mas­tery.

Look­ing at elec­tric ve­hi­cles’ cost struc­ture, the bat­tery makes up 40-50 per­cent of costs, the largest of all.

A Fo­cus on Main­land China

The Chi­nese mar­ket is con­sid­ered of great im­por­tance to Hon Hai, and it has in­vested in a Bei­jing com­pany that leases elec­tric cars.

It has set up a fa­cil­ity in Shanxi Prov­ince, where industrial ro­bots, au­to­ma­tion equip­ment, pre­ci­sion cut­ters, op­ti­cal in­stru­ments, etc. are put in place.

There is also a rein­vest­ment busi­ness in Chongqing, which fo­cuses on designing and man­u­fac­tur­ing car moulds, clips and gauges.

In March, Hon Hai signed a strate­gic al­liance agree­ment with China’s Ten­cent and China Har­mony Auto Hold­ing. The group will em­bark on a project nick­named “In­ter­net + Smart Elec­tric Ve­hi­cle.”

A car ex­ec­u­tive pre­dicts that with Hon Hai join­ing the mar­ket, elec­tric prices will fall to the US$15,000 level.

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