Pininfarina showcases Foxconn’s design, interior and features


Almost a week ago, one of the world’s largest electronics manufacturers, the Foxconn brand, announced three electric vehicles, starting in 2023. Little details were reported at the presentation, but now the Pininfarina atelier responsible for the design of the cars has lifted the veil of secrecy.

The Italian automotive design firm showed off the Foxtron Model E concept in a short video, which its specialists worked on. This sedan will become the flagship of the Foxconn line of electric vehicles, and Kevin Rice, Chief Creative Officer of Pininfarina, personally spoke about its interior, exterior, and some of the «chips» in the video.

The main feature of the electric car, noticeable to an outside observer, will be «smart surfaces». In fact, these are six displays located on the front and rear bumpers in the corners, as well as on the front doors. They can function as interactive lighting or serve as a way of communication between the car and the outside world. For example, with their help, the car will show the cyclist the preferred direction of the detour — which side is safer for him to pass by a standing or slowly moving Model E. It is also suggested to display a welcome text or pattern for the owner approaching the electric vehicle on the smart surface.

The appearance of the electric sedan in the Pininfarina video was awarded a full-fledged circular «flyby». The raised embossing of the wheel arches on the fenders, massive aerodynamic slots on the bumpers, as well as front and rear optics in the form of single stripes across the entire body are striking. Well, the rims attract attention — they are massive and seem to have been carved by a jeweler from a single piece of metal.

The interior of the Model E was shown to us only briefly and from just two angles. The interior can be described as a realm of white leather, flowing lines and futuristic controls. While the steering wheel and levers underneath look familiar, the instrument cluster and infotainment displays were clearly designed to look like a fantastic cockpit. It is clear that this style cannot be called completely original, but it still makes an interesting impression.

Separately, it is worth noting the seemingly missing front passenger seat. There are no details about such a decision, but it looks exactly like this — as if a three-seater sedan with huge legroom for the right rear passenger. Usually, this is the most «lordly» chair in executive cars, VIP’s sit there, on which all the luxury of the car is designed.

Of the interesting features, Rice mentions face recognition, but does not specify exactly how it will be used. Perhaps the car will recognize a suitable owner and open the doors, or, based on recognizing the appearance of passengers or the driver, the electronics will apply personal settings to the seats and comfort options. Other details about the Model E or other electric vehicles of the new Foxtron brand have not yet been reported.

Recall, on Monday, October 18, the largest Taiwanese company Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Ltd held an online presentation of the upcoming products of its electromobility division. To the masses, this company is known by its trade name Fosconn. It occupies a leading position in the world in the production of computer components and consumer electronics. Most of Fosconn’s products are ordered by companies like Apple, Sony, Microsoft, Xiaomi, HMD Global (Nokia), Amazon, Cisco and many others. Yes, in fact, iPhones, iPads and all the mainstream game consoles in the world (PlayStation, Xbox and Switch) are manufactured in Hon Hai factories.

Among other things, Fosconn was named as a prime candidate for the manufacturer of Apple’s electric vehicle, if one appears. However, the company got ahead of its partner and announced the imminent start of sales of its own models. Among them are the crossover, sedan and bus — Model C, Model E and Model T, respectively. The choice of names for both the entire sub-brand and electric cars is interesting. The new Foxtron brand looks like a clear reference to the name of Audi’s «electric train» — e-tron. Well, the «T» and «E» models are a clear reference, firstly, to the first production cars of Ford, and secondly, to the product naming system of the main electric vehicle manufacturer, Tesla. Which, by the way, threatens Hon Hai with lawsuits. When Elon Musk’s company tried to register the Model E, Ford opposed it.

Moreover, Fosconn is far from the first consumer electronics manufacturer to decide to start developing electric vehicles. This year, at least Xiaomi and Oppo (a BBK division) reported on the creation of the corresponding divisions. And Apple, apparently, is not sitting still: recently it became known that the company had lured to itself personnel from Mercedes-Benz, and is also negotiating with Toyota.