The innovative culture that is China

by on June 17, 2017 at 2:04 am in Current Affairs, Economics, Travel | Permalink

CHJ Automotive have not released official images yet of the car, but showed CNBC some of the initial designs of the ultra-compact vehicle. The car is 2.5 meters long and 1 meter wide. It runs on two batteries which are swappable, meaning that the car won’t need to stop for too long at a charging station to re-juice. Google’s in-car operating system called Android Auto is equipped in the vehicle

It will be priced at between 7,000 euros ($7,824) and 8,000 euros.

While it may seem like a small vehicle, Shen explained the target market the company is after in China.

“In China, there are 340 million people (who) daily commute with e-scooters, but there is a strong demand for them to upgrade to something,” Shen told CNBC in a TV interview on Friday.

“But we cannot imagine all of them driving cars, so we want to give them something else, which is an ultra-compact car.”

The product might be used for ride-sharing in Europe as well.  Here is the article, forgive the noisy music at the link, via Ray Kwong.

1 Ray Lopez June 17, 2017 at 2:11 am

I hope this is not another “fake news” story like that bus that passed over cars story.

2 Some Guy June 17, 2017 at 3:07 am

It reminds me of the launch of the Honda 50cc motorcycle.

3 mulp June 17, 2017 at 3:25 am

Car sharing in Europe. Park half a dozen in two parking spots with power. Instead of inserting card to unlock bike, you unlock car for one.

4 mulp June 17, 2017 at 3:31 am

I notice that other places will try products that are ridiculed in the US because 99% there have no access to things the poor in the US need to survive and everyone in the US else assumes were God given to everyone, like 4 door cars.

5 Anonymous June 17, 2017 at 11:14 am

Wow! So everyone in America is an idiot? Wow! You must be sooooo SMART.

6 itsallrigged June 17, 2017 at 1:48 pm

American’s saw fit to vote for…

7 Tenhofaca June 17, 2017 at 6:29 pm

One or the other.

8 Itsallrigged June 17, 2017 at 7:17 pm

Americans saw fit to chose one or the other out of many to stand for election. We could go on.

9 Rohan Verghese June 17, 2017 at 4:12 am

The price is fairly impressive, but it seems relatively similar to an electric Smart fortwo. Though with that width, maybe it’s a single person car. I’m not certain I’d laud it as particularly innovative, though.

10 rastinM June 17, 2017 at 8:31 am

Agree — nothing technically ‘innovative’ here, nor any revelation on Chinese ‘culture’.

It’s just a trivial video commercial for “CHJ Automotive” from CNBC (and Tyler). Empty Hype

11 Cptain Obvious June 17, 2017 at 9:22 am

Slow news day…

12 Mark Thorson June 17, 2017 at 11:44 am

To their credit, they did not claim to 3D print them on Mars.

13 wiki June 17, 2017 at 4:44 am

But of course, this will mean more emissions, so the environmentalists are going to be all over it, right? I mean, better that the minimum car is so expensive that most can’t afford to upgrade from scooters rather than most with scooters be able to move up the car food chain. Why not add a $2000 tax to all Chinese cars? Right? Ha!

14 prior_test2 June 17, 2017 at 6:26 am

You did read this part of the cited text, right? ‘It runs on two batteries which are swappable, meaning that the car won’t need to stop for too long at a charging station to re-juice.’

You are not completely wrong, of course – an e-scooter undoubtedly requires less power, and replacing one e-scooter with one larger vehicle will likely lead to more emissions, if only due to the increased need for power. But then, the same applies to a Smart compared to an SUV, regardless of power source.

15 Ricardo June 17, 2017 at 4:44 am

The website for Tata Nano claims it is selling CNG-powered compact cars in India for about $5,000.

16 prior_test2 June 17, 2017 at 6:22 am

So, better or worse than this? Also available for a roughly comparable price, for the last couple of years –

17 T. Shaw June 17, 2017 at 10:00 am

Does commuter/public transportation (busses, light rail, subways) exist in China?

18 Alex June 17, 2017 at 11:11 am

I think the e-scooter, e-bike, is underrated. Not in the sense of good, but in that it’s unknown in America. Once you visit China it’s surprising.

19 Anonymous June 17, 2017 at 11:35 am

These look like fun.

20 prior_test2 June 17, 2017 at 11:46 am

I have been told that essentially the only scooter allowed in Shanghai are e-scooters – no IC motors. According to someone who spent 6 months there a year ago.

21 Tenhofaca June 17, 2017 at 6:32 pm

Or did six months seem like a year?

22 prior_test2 June 18, 2017 at 2:43 am

Actually, he enjoyed it quite a lot, in general – pollution is a real problem, though. He returned to Germany about a year ago, meaning his arrival there was 18 months ago.

23 Carliton Brigante June 18, 2017 at 2:11 pm

This is more in the nature of an electric scooter. In 2010 we looked at selling electric scooters along with gas scooters in Albuquerque. These were inexpensive, but had traditional acid-lead batteries. We thought they would be ideal for students. But at least at that time, dorms did not have the charging stations. We thought about renting them in Santa Fe and later Branson, MO to tourists. But they are not competitive with gas because they must be idle for two hours to charge. But they would have had their place.

FWIW, I saw a Tesla Roadster in a restaurant parking lot an hour ago.

24 Harun June 17, 2017 at 12:35 pm

What happened to tata mini car the nano

25 Harun June 17, 2017 at 2:10 pm

That was supposed to revolutionize cars too

26 Art Deco June 17, 2017 at 1:12 pm

I’m a cuck!

27 Fazal Majid June 17, 2017 at 5:53 pm

I know people who bought a Smart in San Francisco specifically because they can park in spots other cars can’t, and that means they have parking available in the Mission, which is otherwise unheard of, so there is a market for these in the US as well.

The biggest advantage China has in innovation is that they haven’t given rents to incumbents through a permissive patent application process as we have, in thrall as we are to the IP lawyer industry and the big corporations that benefit from stymying new entrants.

28 Anonymous June 17, 2017 at 9:34 pm

How much do you know about Chinese IP law? You might be surprised

29 Desolation Beauregard June 18, 2017 at 2:59 am

If you are a startup, there are basically two things that can enable you to compete with a large company that decides to go after your client base: patents and network effects. There are generally no network effects for cars, so in the absence of patents, investors would not be willing to finance risky innovative ideas in the automotive space.

In the wake of the AIA and recent USPTO policies imposed by former Googler Michelle Lee, these days China is actually more IP-friendly than the US. Recent legislative changes in China explicitly enable patents on innovative software and business methods.

30 Desolation Beauregard June 18, 2017 at 4:15 am

“in thrall as we are to the IP lawyer industry and the big corporations that benefit from stymying new entrants”

It’s more common for big corporations to simply crush new entrants through economies of scale, predatory pricing etc. It’s the startups that are the net beneficiaries of the patent system.

31 Floccina June 17, 2017 at 5:54 pm

Commuter cars tango Solving traffic congestion here:

32 Floccina June 17, 2017 at 5:58 pm

Also BMW C1 200 – bmw c1 200 executive:
I think like the idea of smaller vehicles if they can be made cheap and safe.

33 Ted Craig June 17, 2017 at 7:52 pm

This reminds me of one of my favorite Top Gear bits:

34 June 17, 2017 at 10:22 pm

From Global Innovation Index

Number of designs contained in industrial design applications filed at a given national or regional office per billion PPP$ GDP 2014

SOURCE: World Intellectual Property Organization WIPO Statistics Database;
International Monetary Fund World Economic Outlook Database 2015 PPP$ GDP

Rank Dsn/BPPP Country

1 35.36 Korea

2 30.32 China

3 27.22 Turkey

4 18.52 Italy

5 18.07 Germany

26 5.22 Japan

27 4.99 Sweden

62 1.17 USA

63 1.13 Brazil

73 0.83 India

35 Desolation Beauregard June 18, 2017 at 3:03 am

Industrial designs are not technological innovations.

36 jsylvest June 21, 2017 at 11:22 am

Innovation? I say file this under Stagnation. It’s twice the size of the Peel P50, which is over half a century old.

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