Exclusive interview with He Xiaopeng: building a car is a big pit, which is 100 times more difficult than starting an Internet business.


Wen / Xi Long

He Xiaopeng tried to drive Tesla for the first time in 2014, and before that, he didn’t think that Tesla was an excellent company, although he had heard that Tesla had been a long time.

But this test drive completely subverted his understanding.

“Many people actually haven’t really experienced electric cars, so they don’t know what good and bad electric cars are.” He Xiaopeng told the ilieyun.

The acceleration is very fast, basically no need to step on the brakes, automatic parking, and more quiet inside the car environment. After experiencing the “magical” user experience of electric cars, He Xiaopeng has a bold idea that he wants to do something big.

Exclusive interview with He Xiaopeng: building a car is a big pit, which is 100 times more difficult than starting an Internet business.

(left in turn: He Tao, He Xiaopeng, Xia Heng)

In June 2014, Tesla opened more than 200 patent technologies to encourage other enterprises to develop electric vehicles. This allowed He Xiaopeng to see the possibility of entering the field of electric vehicles. At that time, UC had just been bought by Ali, and he was looking for new investment direction.

Soon, He Xiaopeng and Xia Heng, He Tao, Yang Chunlei created a small ROC car together, Yu Yongfu, Li Xueling, Fu Sheng, Wu Xiaoguang and many other Internet big men became angel investors.

From the summer of 2014 to the summer of 2017, He Xiaopeng described this period as “behind closed doors”. Until last August, He Xiaopeng officially quit from Ali and became chairman of Xiaopeng automobile. Xiaopeng motor began to voice in the industry gradually.

He Xiaopeng said the first venture was to live, this time to grow up, and in his view, the car is big enough. “The automobile is a global market of tens of trillion, and the market scale is much higher than that of the Internet and mobile Internet.”

He Xiaopeng believes that the Internet plus automatic driving electric vehicles will make cars from a vehicle to a new way of life. In the future, there will be a lot of companies, including car companies, camera companies, artificial Intelligent Company, chip companies, battery companies, all of which are opportunities.

The car is a big pit

In recent four years, more than 300 new car manufacturers have appeared in China. Among them, the “three carriages” represented by Xiaopeng motor, Wei Lai automobile and wal Ma automobile all accumulated more than 5 billion yuan RMB.

Although he has taken so much money, in He Xiaopeng’s view, this is the “Internet three hard drive” to start a new business.

“I want to say that the process of making cars is very painful, and challenges come from all sides.”

He Xiaopeng once said that it was too exaggerated to look at other people’s car making before they knew that 20 billion was not enough to jump into the car. 10 billion.

“Then how much do you think it will cost to complete the dream of building a car?”

“I don’t know, maybe 30 billion.” He Xiaopeng told the ilieyun.

Like China’s lack of an Internet base operating system and a basic database, when He Xiaopeng enters the car field, he finds that China has a lot of defects, whether it is made or material. “When I enter the field of manufacturing, I find that the breadth and depth of research is far from what the Internet can achieve.”

Before entering the manufacturing field, He Xiaopeng always felt that industrial 4 was not far away. But when Xiao Peng invested billions to build the first factory, he found that the industrial 4 was far from the actual application, and many remained in the concept, and the difficulty of changing the reality was much more difficult than the imagination.

And automobile manufacturing is one of the most complex industries in the manufacturing field. After entering, He Xiaopeng discovered that there were so many big pits in the industry. But He Xiaopeng said that Xiaopeng had confidence in filling all these pits.

“Car creation is more difficult than the Internet business, really more than ten times higher, I think to be one hundred times higher, need a lot of money, one year meltdown 5 billion can not survive.” He Xiaopeng said. “We were able to succeed in the Internet field. We really have luck.”

Exclusive interview with He Xiaopeng: building a car is a big pit, which is 100 times more difficult than starting an Internet business.

In January 29th of this year, Xiaopeng automobile announced the start of the 2 billion 200 million yuan B round of financing, and won the joint venture of Alibaba, Foxconn and IDG capital. After the B round of financing was completed, the financing scale of Xiaopeng car exceeded 5 billion yuan.

Although 5 billion of the investment has been taken, it is second only to Wei Lai car in terms of financing scale. But He Xiaopeng said at least two rounds this year, to exceed 1 billion dollars, and strive to become the first place by the end of the year.

In He Xiaopeng’s view, strong financing capability, independent innovation and quality manufacturing are the key to achieve 0 to 1 of Internet car manufacturing. And whether we can get enough capital is the key to the present. It is also one of the decisive factors in this race.

In early March, the news of IPO came to the US, and it was expected to raise $2 billion publicly. Shen Hui, the CEO, then said he was open to the U. S. listing and revealed that the team is studying the United States, Hongkong and the mainland’s IPO proposals.

At the same time, Xiaopeng automobile announced that Dr. Morgan, chairman of the Asia Pacific Investment Bank of JP Gu Hongdi, joined the Xiaopeng Motor Company as vice chairman and president. Gu Hong Di has a very rich experience in the field of financing IPO, and has played an important role in the IPO process of the Alibaba, which is exactly what the small ROC car is in urgent need of.

In addition to bringing money, Ali and Foxconn are also very important for the small ROC car. The former brings Ali’s layout and long-term plan for smart cars, as well as the Ali cloud, the GAD map, the Tmall car, the zebra car and so on. The latter brings advanced manufacturing technology and management experience.

At this point, the three big internet giants in the layout of electric cars are also gradually clear, respectively, the small ROC (ALI), azure automobile (Tencent + Baidu), the Baidu (Baidu). Therefore, some analysts believe that the initial stage of China’s Internet car has been set, but He Xiaopeng does not think so. “Two years later, there will be two more than 1 billion.” He said.

Cai Chongxin told a few reasons for Ali’s investment at the press conference: the first is the Internet of the car; the two is auto automation. Because of the environmental requirements, the electric car will be the future trend; the three is the intelligence of the data, the future can enjoy a lot of intelligent use and function in the car, and these applications and functions are all Through the artificial intelligence, through the data driven. The three points are of great significance to the Alibaba.

“Traditional manufacturing is entering the era of industrial Internet with high technology and high intelligence. We will use the experience and technology of more than 40 years in the industrial manufacturing and the Internet industry to help Xiao Peng’s pursuit of science and technology and the balance of quality. Lu Songqing, chairman of Foxconn Group Hong Teng precision, said. In addition, Foxconn and Xiaopeng will also conduct deep cooperation in intelligent manufacturing, vehicle networking and energy.

Exclusive interview with He Xiaopeng: building a car is a big pit, which is 100 times more difficult than starting an Internet business.

In February 24th, Terry Gou visited Xiaopeng automotive R & D headquarters, visited the factory area and tried G3. The two sides talked for more than 2 hours.

He Xiaopeng believes that there is a great opportunity to build cars in the future. “If we can do well in manufacturing, technology and materials, and combine our Internet capabilities, capital and policies, it will be a great opportunity.”

But He Xiaopeng also stressed that this is also facing enormous challenges.

In the automotive industry, any one company can find hundreds of the best universities in the world and the doctorate of the best universities in China. “This group of smart people, in China’s auto industry for 30 years, why can not make the Chinese car better? Why China’s car company can do a lot, but can not be the world’s strong?”

“Because building a car is a very difficult thing.” He Xiaopeng said.

In the process of car manufacturing, Xiaopeng car has demolished several Tesla, and to some extent, it used Tesla’s related technology. “Every car company will do so, and we will also study competitors.” He Xiaopeng said.

Xiaopeng designed a cool couch before it was very intelligent and comfortable. But then the supply chain colleagues told He Xiaopeng that the sofa would not be used, because if the sofa was used, it would need to be hoisted from the top of the car to the car. It was too expensive to replace it.

“A car has nearly 30 thousand parts. If the error rate of each part is 1%, the reliability is 99%. In fact, it is a very low reliability. If these 30 thousand parts are assembled together, the car will be out of order every week. “

For the challenges faced in 2018, He Xiaopeng believes that the biggest challenge is the delivery of scale quality. It is very difficult to make dozens of good cars, but it is very difficult to control the whole supply chain and production process by making one thousand or two thousand cars of quality every month.

For example, because of fog and haze problems, the civil works in some parts of Beijing can not be done, which also leads to problems in the production of some suppliers on the upper part of Xiaopeng automobile. “Do I say you are not in Beijing? He said that because we are another supplier near Beijing, their production can’t be done, so it affects the suppliers, and the suppliers have affected the vehicle manufacturers.”

Exclusive interview with He Xiaopeng: building a car is a big pit, which is 100 times more difficult than starting an Internet business.

Xiaopeng automobile production line

In addition to production, talent is He Xiaopeng’s priority. Last October, former Tesla Autopilot machine learning director Gu Junli, former vice president of the former FAW Technology Research Institute Liu Ming Hui, former Jingdong senior vice president Xiong Qingyun, and former Mazda car designer Zhao Qian joined the small ROC car.

Building a car is a particularly huge system engineering, requiring talents in many fields. According to He Xiaopeng, at present, there are many different industries, such as science and technology, finance, Internet, automobile and other industries in the small ROC car, among which car talent accounts for 60%~70%. He Xiaopeng believes that how to integrate different backgrounds is the core of the company’s culture.

“We were only more than 100 at the beginning of last year, close to 3000 at the end of the year, to 5000 next year, but it’s still a very small company in the car. So, in the future, we will recruit a lot of Autobots and Internet users.

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