Tesla China rival Xpeng abandons lidar in G9 SUV to cut costs

Image Credit: Xpeng Motors

The Xpeng G9 SUV that will be launched in Europe will be a bit different compared to the version of the vehicle that was launched in the company’s home country of China. Unlike its Chinese counterpart, the Xpeng G9 that will be coming to the Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark, and Norway will have two fewer sensors. 

One of the sensors that were dropped from the Xpeng G9 for Europe was the vehicle’s 3D lidar. Xpeng’s Martin Stegelmeier, head of product planning for Europe, informed Automotive News Europe that the removal of lidar from the G9 was due to cost. 

“Lidar is extremely cost intensive. We want to be at the forefront of ADAS for European carmakers, but we also have to offer a competitive price. With lidar, we wouldn’t be able to do that,” the executive said. 

Stegelmeier’s point was reasonable. Because Xpeng is a newcomer in the automotive industry, the company would have to make its vehicles as attractive to consumers as possible. In Europe, Xpeng seems to be using its vehicles’ cost as a key selling point. This is evident in the G9’s price, which undercuts rivals like the BMW iX3 by over 20%. 

This does not mean to say that the Xpeng G9 is the most affordable all-electric SUV in the market. The vehicle is actually more expensive than rivals like the Tesla Model Y, which became more affordable following its price cuts in January. The G9 is larger than the Model Y, however, being 4891 mm long compared to its Tesla rival’s 4750 mm. 

The Xpeng G9 has a starting price of 57,990 euros in the Netherlands. It is also available with either a 78 kWh or a 98 kWh battery pack. Charging speeds range from 270 kW to 300 kW, provided that the G9 is being charged optimally. And despite its lack of lidar, the G9 still has 29 sensors that help the vehicle perform assisted driving functions such as adaptive cruise control, lane centering, and active lane changes. 

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Tesla China rival Xpeng abandons lidar in G9 SUV to cut costs
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