Information technology and the auto industry are getting closer and closer – Tesla designed its electric cars as rolling smartphones right from the start, and traditional manufacturers are also increasingly concerned with computer issues. In the meantime, the convergence of the two industries is even blurring the boundaries. The Apple contract manufacturer Foxconn presented its own electric car chassis for partners in autumn 2020. And according to a report, he now plans to invest $ 200 million in Byton, a struggling electric car startup founded by former BMW managers.
M-Byte SUV electric car from 2022?
In addition to Tesla, there are now a number of startups in China in particular that are developing their own electric cars and some want to bring them to the West. Some like Nio are developing well, but the startup Byton, founded in 2016, had to interrupt its operations in summer 2020. In the absence of capital, the work continues. But according to a report by the news agency Bloomberg, an agreement with Foxconn could be announced this Monday.
Foxconn wants to invest around 200 million dollars in Byton, reports Bloomberg, citing informed people. The new money is to be used to finance the mass production of the M-Byte SUV electric car presented in 2019 from the first quarter of 2022. The Taiwan-based contract manufacturer is best known for its cooperation with Apple, which is even said to have ambitions for electric cars. According to the report, Foxconn is also looking into collaborations with other automakers in China.
Tesla supplier CATL on board
Previous investors at Byton include the state-owned auto company FAW and Tesla battery supplier CATL. At the end of 2019, the company presented the planned series version of its E-SUV M-Byte, which was characterized, among other things, by a huge screen in the entire dashboard. The start should take place in China as early as 2020, this year in Europe and the USA. According to earlier information, the planned price was 45,000 euros, but before VAT (and possible subsidies).
If the Apple electric car does not come directly from the inventor of the iPhone, then via Byton it may soon be at least from his important contract manufacturer. Either way, it shows once again how close the two once completely separate sectors of IT and automotive have come and are likely to come.