Chinese Startup Gets $1 Billion Funding To Build Four-Door Sports EV
Should we start getting excited about what LeEco can do now that it has the money?by Kirby Garlitos, on
A Chinese startup company named LeEco has raised a staggering $1.08 billion in its effort to put its LeSEE electric car concept into production. In a statement, LeEco’s parent company, Le Holdings Co., was able to secure the funding through investments made by a handful of companies, including Legend Holdings Corp., Yinga Capital Management Co., and China Minsheng Trust.
The funding is expected to be used in the development of the LeSEE, a concept that was first brought into our attention in 2015 as a four-door sports coupe that will be powered by electric technology. No details have been bared about the car other than its prototype looks and its purported top speed of 130 mph.
LeEco founder Jia Yeuting has been spearheading the development of the prototype LeSEE with the objective of offering it to a Chinese market that has embraced the advent of electric vehicles in the wake of stricter emissions regulations in the country.
It’s unclear how LeEco will plan to use the funding it has received, but considering that Jia admitted that financing was the biggest problem the company had getting its EV venture off the ground, that won’t be a problem for the company anymore.
Expect to hear more about the LeEco and its LeSEE electric car concept in the near future. The company has already made bold proclamations with plans to sell 400,000 units per year and that its four-door coupe will be better than the Model S in "every area."
Continue after the jump to read the full story.
The EV winds are swirling in China
This is a huge development for the Chinese startup in its attempt to break through the growing EV market in China. Considering how many players are currently jostling for position in that segment, a financing of a little over $1 billion is a huge step for the company towards getting its concept EV intro production.
Remember, LeECO is far from the only company that’s looking to gain entry into the potentially lucrative EV market in China. A lot of EV startups are also in play, including WM Motor, which has also raised $1 billion in financing, and NextEV Inc., which has already raised the capital it needs to get its own EV program off the ground. Evidently, the Chinese market is becoming a vast playground for these EV startups to start planting their seeds in the hopes of cutting a slice of that market for themselves.
Then again, it would also be fool-hardly for LeECO or any other EV automaker to think that clear skies are ahead just because the Chinese government is embracing the growth of the industry. Part of that growth includes implementing regulations and standards that companies will have to adhere to if they want to gain entry into the segment. That’s not to say that companies like LeECO will be shut off completely, but there is a possibility that even with the finances in place, the government has the influence to make sure that the companies that do get to take part in the growing business are those that will provide products that are up to the standards it will inevitably set.
Source: Automotive News