(Yicai) Aug. 15 -- An autonomous driving system developed by Chinese drone maker DJI Technology and auto brand Baojun will be unveiled next month, and the first car to use the system is expected to cost far less than competing models.
Baojun, a joint venture operated by SAIC-GM-Wuling Automobile, will release a new model equipped with DJI's latest in-car smart driving solution, which will be priced between CNY100,000 and CNY150,000 (USD13,700 and USD20,600), undercutting rivals which cost about CNY380,000 on average.
The new car will offer Level 2+ smart driving functions. L2 autonomous driving is partial unmanned driving, meaning the basic driving is done by the vehicle but humans are responsible for monitoring the surroundings and can take over the controls if needed. L2-equipped vehicles generally have autobrakes, adaptive cruise control, auto parking and other functions.
DJI's vehicle business mainly concerns smart driving systems and software solutions to help carmakers offer affordable smart vehicles, an insider at the Shenzhen-based company told Yicai.
DJI and SAIC-GM-Wuling Auto announced the cooperation in 2021, saying mass production of the new models would start this year.
Cars with assisted driving based on Navigation on Autopilot systems have started to appear in the market this year, with Xpeng Motors, Nio, Huawei Technologies and other brands releasing models with NOA systems. High prices have limited their popularity, however.
New models with high-level smart driving systems cost CNY383,200 (USD52,600) on average, according to data from Gaogong Industry Institute’s smart vehicle research institute.
Automakers and their software partners are taking steps to cut costs so as to lower the bar for the new segment. “Users value cost-performance ratios, and they won’t buy high-end smart driving cars that cost so much,” Zhang Yufeng, president of Horizon Robotics' smart auto business group, has said.
Intelligent connected vehicles are expected to have a 50 percent penetration rate by 2025 and over 70 percent by 2030, China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology said in a document published earlier.
The market for L1, L2 and L3 smart driving systems could be worth CNY86.2 billion (USD11.8 billion) by 2025, up from CNY30.2 billion in 2021, according to TF Securities.
Editors: Shi Yi, Tom Litting