Break the stereotype.
Author | Zhou Zhiyu
Asked the world that the M7 exceeded expectations, Xiaopeng's G6 sold out. After the first half of the electrification of new energy vehicles exceeded expectations in the past three years, the arrival of the second half of intelligence was also somewhat caught off guard.
The players in the field are fighting fiercely on intelligence, and all try to stick intelligent labels firmly on themselves, becoming the “first choice” in the minds of consumers. In the first half, BYD relied on the leadership of electrification to successfully occupy the consumer mentality and rise to the top in sales volume, making it a “global leader in new energy vehicles”.
BYD hopes it can still be “far ahead” in the intelligent second half. After gaining a foothold in the high-end market with D9, its high-end brand Tension also officially launched Tension N7 in July of this year, calling it “the initiator of the second half of BYD's intelligence.”
Zhao Changjiang, general manager of Tenze Auto, told Wall Street news during the Guangzhou Auto Show that intelligence was the most important thing for BYD in the second half. The amount of human and material investment in the past must have been astonishing; otherwise, it would not have been released.
Zhao Changjiang also pointed out that Tension needs to use technology to empower products. After building a good system capacity, the top five global luxury new energy brands will definitely gain momentum in the future.
The following is the full text of Wall Street News's exclusive conversation with Zhao Changjiang (edited):
Wall Street News: At this auto show, MPV has become a particularly hot market segment. What do you think of the current MPV market?
Zhao Changjiang: After Tension D sold more than 10,000 in September, the market saw opportunities in the MPV market. In the past, most of the MPV market was fuel-fueled vehicles, and in the process of transition to new energy, there are also quite a few opportunities in this market. In addition, the high-end MPV market also has iterative demand, and there is a need for exchange purchases.
What's more important is to explore customer needs. There is no doubt that consumers have household needs for large vehicles, including MPVs, and the D9 satisfies consumers' demand for all-purpose MPVs. The convenience of getting on and off the bus, the sense of space in the third row, maneuverability, safety, and intelligence all have their own advantages compared to traditional MPVs.
In terms of product strength, MPVs of independent brands all have superior strength and can compete with traditional million-fuel MPVs.
It is a good thing that so many new products have appeared in the MPV market, and consumers have more choices.
Wall Street News: Currently, new MPV products are piled up in the 300,000 to 600,000 yuan range. Is there pressure on momentum?
Zhao Changjiang: Many of the products launched by friends and merchants are pure electric models. Unlike Tenze, there are both pure electric and hybrid models. This is the biggest difference.
The product positioning of Youshang is also not the same as that of Tenze D9. The Tension D9 is an all-rounder MPV. On November 17, we released the four-seater mass production version of the Tension D9 PREMIER (hereinafter referred to as the “D9 Founding Edition”), a flagship business MPV. In terms of MPV products, Tension D9 can cover diversified needs, which is Tension's advantage.
Second, the continuous development of Tenze guarantees Tenze's brand, reputation, market stock, and used car preservation rate.
The Tenze D9 has also faced competition since its launch. However, in the new energy MPV market, the Tenze D9 has always led the market, maintaining monthly sales of over 10,000. In the future, Tension will continue to improve its products, service, and brand. This is at the core.
Wall Street News: The overall performance of Tension D9 has been good. How do you evaluate Tension's overall performance over the past few months?
Zhao Changjiang: This question is a bit acute, but I am very confident about Tension's next performance.
Since the launch of the Tenze N7 in the second half of the year, it has ranked in the top three in sales volume among SUVs over 300,000 yuan, and the average price has reached 350,000.
Delivery of Tenze's premium smart driving package options has not yet begun, and several thousand more will be delivered one after another starting in December. This is unknown to the outside world. In addition, the Tenze N7 also has a standard battery life version yet to be launched.
I think the Tension N7 can achieve the goal of 5000-10,000 vehicles per month in the first half of next year. Currently, it will take some time to gain momentum. In the intelligent part, the urban NOA function has not yet been pushed to users, and users have yet to experience Tenze's sense of value in intelligence. There will be big changes when Expressway NOA and City NOA are introduced in the future.
Wall Street News: Everyone clearly feels that the automobile market has reached the intelligent second half. Tension is the benchmark for BYD to start the intelligent second half. How is it going to do in the second half?
Zhao Changjiang: BYD takes electrification as the first half, and intelligence is the second half. Over the past three years, BYD has invested a lot of manpower and material resources to build some infrastructure.
This mainly has three important infrastructures. First, there are only a few car companies in the world that can be used as an in-vehicle central computing platform; second, BYD independently developed the BOS BYD operating system; and third, it has developed a large multi-sensor, multi-tasking Transformer model.
After putting the foundation in place, BYD's integration of intelligent assisted driving, smart cockpit, and smart chassis can make driving more comfortable, smarter, and safer on the basis of the three major infrastructures.
In the AEB test not long ago, the Tenze N7 can stop at night while driving at 60 km/h. This is also a reflection of Tension's intelligence in the first tier of car companies. In addition to active braking and emergency avoidance, Tension can also prevent collision and avoidance for rear vehicles. After starting the AEB, the Tenze N7 will generally have a safe distance of 2 meters ahead. If a vehicle from behind approaches at this time, the vehicle will automatically move about 1 meter forward.
Of course, in scenarios where users clearly sense immediate needs and high frequency, Tension's intelligence is also leading the way. Automatic parking. Tension can detect objects at a minimum distance of 3 cm, and can park in the target parking space even in a very small space.
Therefore, intelligence is the most important thing for BYD in the second half. In the past, so much investment in manpower and material resources must have been astonishing; otherwise, it would not come out.
Wall Street News: There is a recent trend. Traditional luxury car companies are also gaining momentum, and they have good electrified models. Facing these rivals with strong financial strength, how can Tension cope with the changes in the luxury car market?
Zhao Changjiang: There will always be competition. Automobiles are a big market, and there will be differentiated competition. Tension is not afraid of competition. As the new energy luxury car brand of the BYD Group, Tension should do this right.
If car companies want to win, they must have their own core competitiveness. This includes technology, cost control, product definition, service and channels, etc., which is the competitiveness of the entire system.
If you do your own thing well, you'll be able to get your share of the luxury market cake. There will be three or five first-tier brands in this market segment. Tension will be one of them.
In the future, Tension will have a global foothold and gain a foothold in the top five new energy luxury vehicles.
Wall Street News: Tension also has plans to go global, but like the MPV market where Tension D9 is located, the main consumers are concentrated in Asia. How can Tension strengthen its competitiveness in the face of a global layout?
Zhao Changjiang: We are a global company ourselves. The joint venture between BYD and Mercedes-Benz is a global enterprise from the perspective of shareholders.
In terms of models, all Tension models are built based on globalization. It is expected that next year, the right-hand drive version of the Tenze D9 will be mass-produced and delivered. Therefore, we have made a lot of preparations this year. Global road shows in cities such as Bangkok, Munich, and Tokyo have paved the way for globalization in terms of access, channels, and service systems.
Next year, Tension will first sell right-hand drive vehicles in Hong Kong, China and Macau, and then cover Southeast Asia, and even the whole of Asia, Europe, and South America. Tension has its own pace, and the overall progress is very fast. Next year will be the first year for Tension to actually sell overseas.
Wall Street News: What are your expectations for Tension's sales next year?
Zhao Changjiang: Tension has sold 100,000 vehicles this year. Next year will definitely be better, with more than 200,000 vehicles.