On April 20, Chinese technology company LeEco, formerly known as LeTV, announced its first set of smartphones under the LeEco brand name. The company also took the opportunity to unveil its first electric concept car called LeSEE at the event.
LeEco says that the LeSEE will be displayed at the Beijing auto show starting later in April. The LeSEE is not only an electric car but it is also a connected, smart and a self-driving car. Jia Yueting, the co-founder and CEO of LeEco, hopes that the upcoming car will help China's auto industry to reach the global auto sector.
"When everyone is questioning us over our ability to develop a car like this and is laughing at us, we are still able to be here and show you this car ... I am so emotional," says Jia Yueting.
LeEco did not reveal a lot of information about LeSEE. However, Jia Yueting drove the car from a container to the end of a stage. The CEO of the company also gave live demonstration of LeSEE's self-parking and self-driving capabilities via voice commands on a mobile app.
Similar to many other concept cars, the steering wheel of the LeSEE folds down when in self-driving mode. LeEco says that the LeSEE will also offer great entertainment experience to passengers of the car. The LeSEE is expected to have an isolated area for each passenger, which means when one passenger is enjoying music or other entertainment, it will not disturb co-passengers.
The Chinese government is promoting a switch to EVs, which will help reduce pollution levels in the country. The efforts of LeEco and other EV companies in the country is increasing after the government liberalized the auto industry and allowed high-tech firms to invest in electric cars. The government will also offer incentives to purchasers of electric cars in China.
A number of companies such as Baidu, Alibaba, Xiaomi and more have financed a number of electric car startups including CH-Auto and NextEV.
EV makers in China are also expecting policymakers and the government to direct public transportation providers, courier services and taxi operators to buy electric vehicles and also invest in developing the infrastructure for charging electric cars in the country.