A Chinese company is the latest electric-car start-up to mount a challenge to the world's best-selling electric car, the Tesla Model Y.
Xpeng – which sells vehicles in China and Europe – has introduced the G6, a five-door mid-sized electric SUV, in its home market. The Xpeng G6 is priced from RMB209,900 ($AU45,000), undercutting the Tesla Model Y which starts from RMB263,900 ($AU56,500). Australian plans for the Xpeng G6 – and the company's other vehicles – are yet to be announced, though it has expressed an intention to sell its models in the right-hand-drive UK market.
The G6 is the fifth model from the Guangzhou-based electric-vehicle manufacturer – which recently signed a deal with Volkswagen to co-develop electric cars for China – following the G3i SUV, P7 and P5 sedans, and larger G9 SUV. The G6 borrows design cues from other Xpeng models, including a simple front-end design, a sleek coupe-inspired body, and full-width front and rear lights. With dimensions of 4753mm in length, 1920mm in width, and 1650mm in height, the G6 is slightly longer and taller than the Tesla Model Y, but narrower.
The G6 is built on Xpeng's new 'SEPA 2.0' electric car platform, which incorporates several advancements compared to previous models. The body structure of the G6 benefits from integrated front and rear aluminium cast elements claimed to result in a higher level of rigidity, while the electrical system features an 800-volt architecture that enables DC fast charging at up to 480kW.
The G6 is also equipped with Xpeng's latest XNGP driver-assistance technology that uses 31 sensors and dual Orin-X microchips. The G6 is available in single-motor, rear-wheel-drive form – generating outputs of 218kW and 440Nm – or a dual-motor, all-wheel-drive flagship model with 358kW and 660Nm.
Buyers of the G6 have the choice between 66kWh lithium iron phosphate (LFP) or 87.5kWh lithium-ion batteries.
For the rear-wheel-drive variants, these batteries provide claimed driving range of up to 580km and 755km respectively, according to lenient Chinese CLTC testing procedures. The dual-motor variant has a claimed driving range of 700km CLTC.
Inside the cabin, the G6 offers 10.2-inch instrument and 15.0-inch infotainment displays running Xpeng-developed software. The G6 also incorporates a heat pump-based air conditioning system that can use heat energy from the battery pack and motors to warm the cabin.