Technologically competitive, cheaper, really ambitious… Chinese electric cars are coming. Chinese manufacturers have been worried about the industry for years, and they’re suddenly here. We have chosen six cars that will represent the French market.
Chinese automakers have long planned to conquer the European market. Now it’s over, you’ll see more and more Chinese cars on French roads. After the entire auto industry has been whispering anxiously for years that the Chinese are coming, they suddenly get here. We have handpicked a selection of cars that we believe will represent the French market.
AURA Funky Cat
The Ora Funky Cat, from the Great Wall group, which we came across in Norway, is a 100% electric city car that adopts a retro design with smooth lines on the outside and big eyes with Matrix LED technology as the headlights. It is a very serious alternative to the Peugeot e-208, Renault Zoe or even the future MG4.
Two versions will be offered, a small battery with a capacity of 49 kWh, which should allow 300 km according to the WLTP standard. The large battery stores 63 kWh for a range of 400 km. The two most powerful electric motors with a capacity of 126 kW (171 hp) will make it possible to do from 0 to 100 km / h in 8.3 seconds. The small engine has a power of 105 kW (143 hp).
The little extra thing from Funky Cat is his onboard system. The software part, in fact, is remarkably flexible and the design is very convincing and over-colored. A 10.25-inch display for the instrument cluster as well as a second, similarly sized (and fully touch-sensitive) infotainment screen are located in the middle of the dashboard.
The big unknown remains price and availability in France. In the UK, the Ora Funky Cat will be available at the end of the year at £30,495, around €36,000.
In March 2022, Xpeng (Xiaopeng Motors) opened its first orders for its P5 sedan in Norway, Sweden, Denmark and the Netherlands. It will have a very short lifespan, and XPeng is finally relying on the P7 to break into Europe.
The new XPeng P7 is a Chinese sedan designed to appeal to customers interested in the Tesla Model 3. Although the P7 is, in fact, halfway between the Model 3 and the Model S. But given the prices, it is a discount to the Model 3.
The P7 is based on XPeng’s B platform, codenamed “Edward,” which was jointly developed and designed under contract with Porsche. It has (almost) nothing to envy Tesla, whether it’s its performance (655 Nm torque and 0-100 km/h in 4.3 seconds), its autonomy (up to 530 km on the combined WLTP cycle), or its charging speed (up to 100 kW) .
The Xpeng P7 also has its own operating system, with OTA updates, as well as driving assistance modes, in order to allow, when possible, level 3 autonomous driving.
As for its arrival in Europe, it is priced at 42,500 euros in Norway. We can already see it in galleries in Oslo, Maxime Fontanier was able to try it. In France, you will definitely have to pay a little more … since Norway does not impose any tax on electric cars.
MG is already in France, and the latest announcement is the MG4. The MG 4 (MG MG4) has opened its order book, the first model in the range to be based on the MSP (Modular Scalable Platform) platform developed by SAIC.
The Chinese Accord starts with a 51 kWh battery, which allows it to travel 350 km on the WLTP cycle, according to the manufacturer, while power is displayed at 170 hp. A 2ᵉ version will also be offered, with a 65 kWh battery offering a range of 450 km and making 204 hp. It then competes with the 220 version of the Mégane E-Tech with a 60 kWh battery.
Later, you will also see other versions equipped with a daylight all-wheel drive system. Currently, the most efficient variant achieves from 0 to 100 km/h in less than 8 seconds, for a top speed limited to 160 km/h.
MG announced that the MG4 will be sold at a price of 30 thousand euros in its basic version. A more than attractive price, which does not take into account the environmental bonus of 6000 euros which is still valid until the end of the year before it reaches 5000 euros next year. For comparison, the MG 4 will then cost at least 5,000 euros less than the Renault Megane E-Tech, offered from 35,200 euros in its 130-hp version and with a 40 kWh battery.
Note that MSP is compatible with battery replacement, as Nio already offers in China and Norway. The brand has not specified whether MG will be equipped with this function, but we know thatIt will be equipped with semi-autonomous driving via MG Pilot. The agreement will also be compatible with remote OTA updates.
In the same way that many new car manufacturers do, Nio decided to land in Norway to market the ET7 sedan and ES8 SUV. Note that Nio is often talked about. The Chinese brand offers to exchange batteries in a few minutes at designated stations. The thing that stood out to us was ET7.
The ET7 is in a way the standard bearer of the brand in Europe, given that it’s a large electric sedan positioned as a competitor to the Tesla Model S.
The car contains several batteries, one in between 70 and 75 kWh with independence 500-550 kmone second of 100 kWh with independence 700 kmand finally a semi-solid battery from 150 kWh Allow the car to claim about 1000 km Scope on the Chinese CLTC cycle on a single charge.
The car is equipped with two electric motors that develop a combined power of 480 kW (about 653 hp) and maximum torque of 850 Nm. The front motor is a permanent magnet motor, while the rear motor is induction motor. These two engines make it possible to get from 0 to 100 km / h in 3.9 seconds.
For now, pricing in Germany has yet to be revealed, but Nio is targeting a premium, specifically Mercedes-Benz, Audi or BMW. The brand guarantees that the price will be broadly equivalent to today’s performance price of the Tesla Model 3, which means about 65,000 euros. After Germany, the manufacturer will seek to launch in the Netherlands, Sweden and Denmark, three countries where electric cars and infrastructure are more democratic than in France.
Finally, let’s finish with the best-selling category in France: SUVs. This is not the Aiways U5, which is actually available, but the U6. It is an SUV with a coupe profile, with a front engine of 160 kW, three batteries with capacities: 63, 72 and 88 kWh. With estimated autonomy, on the CLTC cycle, between 450 and 600 kilometers (WLTP).
It’s still too early to know the pricing for the U6. However, these should still be very close to those of the U5, which are 39,990 euros and 44,990 euros excluding the eco bonus.
Then there’s BYD (“Make Your Dreams”), which is currently the world’s largest maker of electric vehicles. It could start with the recently unveiled BYD Seal, an electric vehicle in the form of a Tesla Model 3 with a range of about 500 kilometers.
It’s an electric sedan that clearly aims to compete directly with the Tesla Model 3, which is currently still the best-selling model in Europe.
In total, at least three versions within the range of the BYD stamp will be offered. The less efficient version will then offer 204 horsepower from its single engine, while the catalog-covering variant will combine two electric motors. Between the two, an intermediate version of 313 horsepower will be offered, only in propulsion.
To follow us, we invite you to download our Android and iOS app. You can read our articles and files and watch the latest videos on YouTube.