Earlier this week, Apple manufacturer Foxconn announced it was getting into the car business with a new line of electric cars. The EV line is called Foxtron, and the most promising of the trio is the Model E luxury sedan designed by Pininfarina. Now, the legendary Italian coachbuilder is sharing a guided video tour of the upcoming battery-powered saloon, led by the brand’s chief creative officer Kevin Rice. And, while we still have plenty of questions, we’re even more intrigued by the EV than before.
At a glance, the Foxtron Model E doesn’t look entirely dissimilar from Lucid’s eagerly anticipated debut EV, the Air. Both sedans feature a design that’s at once sleek and commanding, though Foxconn’s car—in true Pininfarina fashion—has even smoother lines and curves. Where the Model E really separates itself, though, is its lighting package. In addition to its ultra-bright headlamp strip and taillights, the vehicle’s front, sides and rear feature smart surfaces that help it communicate with the outside world. Thanks to these integrated light-up panels, your car will indicate when it’s turning, greet you as you open your door and alert pedestrians when it’s safe to pass. It’s a feature that’s both cool and useful.
Rice also took time to go over what to expect from its spacious interior. It may not be revolutionary—unlike what we’ve seen from the Mercedes-Benz EQS and its 57-inch “hyperscreen”—but it does look sophisticated, with leather upholstery, metal accents and ambient lighting all complementing each other. In the front, a large display panel extends from the driver-side door to the middle of the dashboard. In addition to housing the vehicle’s facial recognition safety feature, it appears that it will also include a digital gauge cluster as well as a large screen for infotainment purposes. Unfortunately, Rice didn’t say anything about the rear-seat “dedicated mobile office” that Foxconn teased on Monday.
From the video footage, the Model E looks every bit the part of a luxury sedan. If Foxconn can also deliver the performance specs it’s promised—750 hp, sub-three second 0 to 62 mph time and a 466-mile range—it might be able to compete with cars like the Air, EQS and, the current industry leader, the Tesla Model S. Whether Apple will someday trust Foxconn to design the first Apple EV is an open question.