A year after almost unanimously disappointing every EV enthusiasts at CES by unveiling the shell of a concept car, Faraday Future (FF) now aims to redeem itself at CES 2017 by unveiling its first car that it intedns to bring to production.
CES starts during the first week of January.
Jia Yueting, CEO and Chairman of LeEco (FF’s main investor), made the announcement at LeEco’s US introduction today.
The company held a major event in San Francisco to debut all its products in the US, including smartphones, TVs (read more about them at 9to5Google), ebike, and its own electric vehicle, the LeSee which is based on FF’s VPA electric platform.
Faraday Future’s first car is hardly a secret at this point. We reported on several prototype sightings around Los Angeles over the past few months.
Here’s the most recent sighting:
The crossover/SUV is expected to enter the luxury segment, potentially a competitor to Tesla’s Model X, but likely even more expensive – though the startup is considering different ownership models that could reduce the entry price.
FF has been heavily investing in hiring autonomous driving talent and the vehicle is equipped with at least one lidar sensor. It will feature some autonomous features at launch, but we don’t expect it to be fully autonomous. We also reported last month that FF hired a map expert from Apple and it is looking to be heavily involved in building its own mapping system.
You can expect to see the vehicle and likely be able to place a reservation at CES 2017 in just over 2 months.
At the event today, Jia Yueting also announced a new version of its LeSee all-electric and autonomous car, the LeSee Pro. The vehicle was supposed to be unveiled at the event, but apparently they had logistic issues and the vehicle was damaged during transport.
They brought another one used by Micheal Bay in London for the next Transformer movie and the company is showing it to the press at the event, but it wasn’t ready for the presentation.
Our understanding is that LeEco, which again is the main investor behind Faraday Future, is using its own brand in China, where it is already popular because of its phones and content services, but the vehicle will be powered by FF’s technology.
But in the US, the vehicles will be sold under FF’s brand.