Super car

EV and AV tech advances lessen design limitations

The digital revolution has sent automakers scrambling to transition to mobility providers. The focus is less on sheet metal and horsepower and more on software and services. The rise of electrification and autonomous driving are pushing vehicle development in new directions. Vision, courage and curiosity are the new must-haves for product planners.

That’s according to Martin Stegelmeier, Head of Product Planning for Europe at Xpeng. The Chinese electric vehicle (EV) brand has made a name for itself in its home market over the past nine years and recently began expanding into Europe with its  smart, highly automated, premium EVs. “We wanted to prove that a tech-oriented company also understands automotive design,” he tells Automotive World. Its ambitions are nothing if not lofty—literally. As well as SUVs and sports sedans, Xpeng is also keen to get in on the eVTOL (electric vertical take-off and landing) market.

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