Published on January 25th, 2020 |
by Jo Borrás
January 25th, 2020 by Jo Borrás
Aiways will make history when order books for its U5 all-electric SUV open at this year’s Geneva Motor Show by becoming the first Chinese car brand to sell an electric car in the European market. The big question that Aiways hopes to answer: can China compete with Europe, in Europe, and succeed?
Aiways’ U5 SUV first appeared on our radar back in September, when it became the first Chinese EV to receive full type approval from German testing and certification agency, TUV Rheinland. At that time, range was estimated to be nearly 270 miles (434 km) in the NEDC cycle — closer to 240, by “our” standards — and the U5 met all the TÜV’s strict noise and safety tests, as well. “The Chinese automotive industry is strongly committed to alternative drive line technologies and intends to use them to open up international markets,” explained Gunnar Pflug, the head of type certification at TÜV. “TÜV Rheinland has the competence and experience to provide Chinese manufacturers with access to these markets through appropriate testing and certification services.”
About the size of an Audi Q5, the Aiways U5 seats 5 and offers a 190 HP electric motor with about 230 lb-ft of TQ from 0 RPM. Which should, in theory, translate to more than enough performance for navigating Europe’s dense urban centers.
Aiways plans to deliver 2000 units to customers in its first year, ostensibly to focus on delivering both build quality and customer service that are on par with what its European customer expect. Assuming things go well, Aiways can “flip a switch” and deliver 50,000 (fifty-thousand) units to European customers in calendar year 2021. Assuming they can sell 50,000 of the things, that is, but with a price tag expected to be somewhat less than 30,000 Euro, maybe that’s not such a huge ask?
What do you guys think? Take a look at the Aiways U5 in the official press photos, below, then let us know if you think these first 2,000 units will have what it takes to make meaningful inroads into the EU in the comments section at the bottom of the page.
Made in China: AIWAYS U5 Electric SUV
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