At an online investor meeting, Foxconn Group’s Chairman Young Liu shared insights on the company’s current endeavors. He disclosed that the group is in discussions with over 10 clients on 20 electric vehicle (EV) collaboration projects. Out of these, two projects are already in production, and five more are likely to result in contracts. Additionally, Foxconn’s electric vehicle platform, Model C, is on track for mass production in Taiwan in the fourth quarter. Analyzing the information released during the meeting, TrendForce offers the following insights:
- Foxconn’s Electric Vehicle Platform Outsourcing Model Builds a Self-Sufficient Ecosystem
Electrified vehicle platform manufacturing enables various components to be categorized into several platform types based on vehicle segments, avoiding the chaotic scenario of each car having unique specifications. This modular approach enhances the utilization of interior space and promotes advancements in battery life and future advanced driving control designs. Consequently, various automakers are introducing new energy vehicle platforms.
However, initial investments in platform development can be burdensome for automakers. Moreover, integrating new EV technologies into platforms poses potential risks. Foxconn’s EV platform, by adopting an ‘outsourced’ manufacturing concept, reduces initial resource expenditures for automakers and accelerates market entry for EV models.
Foxconn also presents the concept of MIH, a membership-based industry cluster, which gathers around 2,400 suppliers spanning battery, motor, and control systems, building a comprehensive EV platform ecosystem.
- Correct Market Approach Yet Missing a Vital Catalyst
Foxconn, not opting for a fully proprietary brand, draws lessons from Taiwan’s automotive brand history. Building on years of contract manufacturing, the company ventures into the EV market, positioning itself ahead of the curve.
However, with the rapid global development of electric vehicles, the early advantages Foxconn established face challenges. The Volkswagen MEB platform successfully produced the Ford Explorer, hinting at potential collaborations through platform sharing. Audi is reportedly considering direct acquisition of a Chinese new energy vehicle platform. The common theme here is that traditional automakers seem inclined to collaborate with proven counterparts, showcasing the cautious approach toward platforms. At this stage, while Foxconn’s promising achievements might attract certain startups, their stability and market scale might not fully align with Foxconn’s EV market expectations.
Foxconn is well-prepared but awaits a catalyst. The company currently lacks the support of established automakers like GM, BMW, and Stellantis. If the projects mentioned during the investor meeting involve collaborations with such established players and secure manufacturing contracts, Foxconn’s model will foster a more diversified evolution in future EV platform collaborations.