Jidu ROBO-01 Lunar Edition offers powerful performance at an attractive price point, laying the groundwork for gaining the first and most loyal owners.
Jidu Auto, the car-building arm of Baidu, today unveiled a limited edition of its first robocar, letting the core specs of the highly anticipated model be known.
The model, called ROBO-01 Lunar Edition, is a midsize SUV that Jidu has equipped with high-spec hardware to give it powerful performance and an attractive price tag.
Riding on Baidu's strong self-driving technology accumulation, Jidu also promises that the model will have point-to-point assisted driving capabilities by the time it is delivered in 2023, which will be the first local car company to do so.
The ROBO-01 Lunar Edition is based on Geely's SEA (Sustainable Experience Architecture), the same platform from which models including the Zeekr 001 and Smart #1 were born, and is expected to give Jidu's first model the same excellent mechanical qualities.
The car is a co-branded model in cooperation with China's Lunar Exploration Project and is priced at RMB 399,800 ($55,253).
The ROBO-01 Lunar Edition was originally limited to 1,000 units and has already been pre-ordered. At today's launch event, Jidu CEO Xia Yiping announced an additional 1,000 units for the model.
The car is 4,853 mm long, 1,990 mm wide, 1,611 mm high and has a wheelbase of 3,000 mm. For reference, the Nio ES6 measures 4,850 mm in length, 1,965 mm in width, 1,758/1,731 mm in height, and 2,900 mm in wheelbase.
The ROBO-01 Lunar Edition is equipped with dual permanent magnet synchronous motors with a total peak power of 400 kW and a 0-100 km/h sprint time of 3.9 seconds.
It is powered by a 100-kWh ternary lithium battery from CATL with a range of more than 600 km, according to Jidu.
The model's sporty design helps it achieve a relatively low wind resistance coefficient of 0.249 Cd. For reference, the Nio ES6 has a wind resistance coefficient of 0.29/0.28 Cd, which is about the industry average for a mid-size SUV.
The ROBO-01 Lunar Edition is also equipped with an electric rear wing that automatically raises and lowers according to vehicle speed.
Compared to the current mainstream electric models with hidden door handles, Jidu has gone a step further with the ROBO-01 Lunar Edition by eliminating all door handles and instead using push-button door opening.
The model has four electrically openable doors with four integrated millimeter-wave radars, and Jidu said they are more accurate and have fewer blind spots than ultrasonic radars for obstacle avoidance.
The ROBO-01 Lunar Edition has interactive AI pixel headlights on the front that support light language including valet parking status alerts and pedestrian alerts.
The model will be the first to be equipped with Qualcomm's fourth-generation Snapdragon digital cockpit platform -- the 8295 chip. For comparison, mainstream electric vehicles currently sold in China are equipped with Qualcomm's third-generation Snapdragon digital cockpit platform -- the 8155 chip.
Qualcomm 8295 is the first mass-produced 5 nm process automotive chip with 30 TOPS of AI computing power, a nearly 8x performance improvement over its predecessor.
The cockpit of ROBO-01 Lunar Edition is equipped with a 35.6-inch 6K screen and a 7-inch interactive display in the rear. In comparison, many electric models, including the Tesla Model 3, are equipped with 15-inch center screens.
In the assisted driving system, the model is equipped with dual Nvidia Orin X chips that provide up to 508 TOPS of computing power. It also has 31 sensors, including 2 LiDARs, 5 millimeter-wave radars, 12 ultrasonic radars, and 12 HD cameras.
Along with the release of ROBO-01 Lunar Edition, Jidu unveiled the advanced intelligent driving system Point-to-Point Autopilot (PPA), a high-level intelligent driving solution designed to handle highway, city street and parking scenes.
By the time it is delivered, ROBO-01's PPA capability will be expanded to cover the most versatile range of use scenarios of any model in China, Jidu said.
Jidu is already working on scenario generalization for high-level smart driving in Beijing and Shanghai, and will ensure that the official version of the PPA will gradually cover core cities across the country with an industry-leading and efficient R&D pace.
Jidu is currently in the process of scenario generalization of high-level intelligent driving in Beijing and Shanghai, with the goal of ensuring that the final version of its PPA can be extended to all major cities in China.
The assisted driving capability is built on the accumulated technology of Apollo, Baidu's autonomous driving division whose high-level autonomous driving capabilities have been extensively validated on its robotaxi with over 36 million kilometers of autonomous driving testing.
As a limited edition of Jidu's first model, the ROBO-01 Lunar Edition offers consumers attractive specifications as well as an attractive price, laying the groundwork for gaining the first and most loyal owners.
In addition to the attractiveness of the vehicle itself, Jidu is offering the first owners benefits including free lifetime charging, lifetime vehicle warranty, free lifetime roadside assistance, and free home charging pads.
The ROBO-01 Lunar Edition will open for delivery in 2023, and its regular production version will be unveiled soon, Jidu said.
The exterior design of Jidu's second robocar is scheduled to be unveiled during the 2022 Guangzhou Auto Show, the company said.