In a bold stride toward the future of electric vehicles (EV), Foxconn, the industrial titan famed for assembling Apple’s iPhones, has announced a groundbreaking collaboration with American semiconductor powerhouse Nvidia.
This partnership is poised to catapult Foxconn into the heart of the burgeoning EV market with the development of artificial intelligence (AI) data factories pivotal to this ambition.
AI: The New Frontier in Electric Vehicle Manufacturing
The streets of Taipei witnessed a historic handshake between Foxconn Chairman Young Liu and Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang, signaling the dawn of a new era in computing and automobile manufacture.
The proposed AI data factories, empowered by Nvidia’s sophisticated chips and software, stand at the forefront of Foxconn's transformation from a manufacturing service company to a platform solution enterprise. Jensen Huang, known for his visionary leadership at Nvidia, articulated the essence of this revolution: “This is the beginning of a brand new way of doing software — using computers to write software that no humans can”.
The envisaged large computing systems will craft software platforms for next-generation EVs by harnessing the nuances of daily interactions. Young Liu delineated Foxconn’s metamorphosis and burgeoning EV portfolio with evident pride, "In three short years, Foxconn has displayed a remarkable range of high-end sedan, passenger crossover, SUV, compact pick-up, commercial bus, and commercial van”.
Foxconn's aggressive push into EVs includes the release of three models in 2021, followed by additional ones last year, and most recently, the unveiling of Model N, a cargo van, and Model B, a compact SUV during its tech day.
Despite not selling vehicles under its brand, Foxconn emulates its business model akin to its iPhone assembly line, building vehicles for clients worldwide. Notably, its electric buses have already commenced operations in Kaohsiung, and Luxgen's N7 model—Foxconn's first electric car—is set to hit Taiwanese streets by January 2024.
A Competitive Landscape with Room for Innovation
Foxconn’s foray into the electric car industry places it amidst a competitive yet flourishing market. With global EV sales, including battery-powered and hybrid vehicles, surpassing 10 million units last year—a 55% increase from 2021, the International Energy Agency projects nearly 14 million electric car sales in 2023.
Collaborations like that of Foxconn and Nvidia demonstrate the powerful synergy of computing technology and automobile manufacturing. This alliance is not just about introducing another player into the EV space; it’s about redefining the fabric of the automotive industry through the transformative power of artificial intelligence.
The future is electric, and with strategic partnerships paving the way, it's a future that's rapidly taking shape on the global stage.