New Xiaomi SU7: smartphone maker's first car goes big on screens

The Xiaomi SU7 offers up to 497 miles of range and 0-62mph time under three seconds – enough to worry a Tesla Model S or Porsche Taycan

Clearly not content with just being one of the three biggest smartphone manufacturers in the world, Chinese electronics goliath Xiaomi has kicked in the door to the automotive segment and is hunting some big game with its very first car, the all-new Xiaomi SU7.

The all-electric saloon is set to rival the likes of the Porsche Taycan, BMW i5 and Tesla Model S. On paper at least, it looks like the SU7 could have a fighting chance, as it features an 800-volt architecture – just like the Taycan – can accelerate from 0-62mph in 2.78 seconds and boasts up to 497 miles of range courtesy of a 101kWh battery. 

Those last two stats are for the range-topping SU7 Max, which features a dual-motor setup that provides all-wheel drive, and a total power output of 664bhp and 838Nm of torque. However, it’s worth noting that the range figures for the SU7 are from the Chinese CLTC test cycle, not the WLTP system used in Europe.

Xiaomi says that when the SU7 is plugged into the right charging point, drivers can add up to 137 miles of range from just five minutes of charging, or 317 miles if you’re willing to wait 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, the entry-level SU7 uses just one electric motor to drive its rear wheels, though it still produces a very healthy 294bhp and 400Nm of torque, meaning the car will hit 62mph from a standstill in around 5.3 seconds. The rear-drive SU7’s range is also shorter at 415 miles. 

Helping achieve those impressive range figures is the SU7’s extremely low rag coefficient of 0.195Cd, which is considerably lower than the already very slippery 0.219Cd of the recently facelifted Tesla Model 3. The SU7 also bests the previously record-breaking 0.197Cd achieved by another of its close rivals, the Lucid Air

Head of design at Xiaomi’s EV division is Tianyuan Li, who was a senior designer at BMW and had a hand in the look of the polarising, yet undeniably distinctive BMW iX. To our eyes, the front end of the SU7 looks like it belongs to one of McLaren’s supercars like the 750S, due to the similar headlight shape and rounded nose design. The sloped roofline and subtly pronounced rear haunches also reminds us of the Porsche Taycan, while the SU7’s rear end with its full-width light bar closely resembles that of the BYD Seal.

The SU7 also features an integrated LiDAR sensor at the top of the windscreen, similar to those on the flagship Volvo EX90, Polstar 3 and Lotus Emeya. It’s complemented with numerous cameras and other sensors around the car that together provide data for Xiaomi’s Pilot autonomous driving technology

Xiaomi SU7 interior

Xiaomi has sent us some of the first images of the SU7’s very screen-centric interior – not surprising for a brand known for its smartphone. The centrepiece is an enormous 16.1-inch central touchscreen with 3K resolution and the brand’s own HyperOS infotainment system capable of displaying multiple widgets for maps, music and driver assistance simultaneously. 

If you don’t want to rely solely on the enormous touchscreen, a set of physical controls and a large volume dial can be attached to the bottom of the display, or removed just as easily for a slightly cleaner look. There’s also a 7.1-inch digital instrument panel behind the three-spoke steering wheel, as well as a head-up display. 

When unveiling the SU7, Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun emphasised the additional rear cabin space in the SU7 compared to the Model S or a BMW 5 Series. There’s also mounts for Xiaomi tablets on the backs of the front seats. But as well as charging tablets and giving rear passengers something to watch movies on, they become extensions of the car’s infotainment system, able to control the music or even move the seat in front.

The SU7 offers 517 litres of boot space – slightly less than the latest BMW 5 Series saloon – however there’s an additional 105 litres of space under the bonnet, in the ‘frunk’.

The Xiaomi SU7 is expected to launch in 2024, however it’s currently not clear if or when the car will be making its way over to Europe and the UK. Pricing is also under wraps for the time being.

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News reporter

As our news reporter, Ellis is responsible for covering everything new and exciting in the motoring world, from quirky quadricycles to luxury MPVs. He was previously the content editor for DrivingElectric and won the Newspress Automotive Journalist Rising Star award in 2022.

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