After two years, the vehicle joint venture project between Baidu and Geely has finally ushered in a qualitative change. On August 14, Geely holding Group officially announced the upgrading of Baidu Geely strategic cooperation, its new car robot brand "Ji Yue" was established, and the first model was named "Ji Yue 01". As for the definition of the name "Jiyue", the official said that it implies the extreme performance of intelligent cars and the leapfrogging of intelligent technology, and is committed to establishing a full-scene closed-loop system covering "product research and development, manufacturing, market operation, and user service". To create a benchmark high-end intelligent travel experience for users.
Reviewing the cooperation between the two sides, Baidu and Geely Holdings announced cooperation to build cars as early as 2021; in March 2021, Jidu Automobile Co., Ltd. was established with a registered capital of 2 billion yuan. Xia Yiping served as the CEO of the company. Baidu and Geely own 55% and 45% of the shares respectively. In January 2022, Jidu announced the completion of a round of financing of nearly $400m, which will be increased by Baidu and Geely. In October 2022, the limited edition of ROBO-01, the first car robot, will be launched as a medium-to-large SUV with a price of 399800 yuan, and delivery is scheduled to begin in 2023. In December 2022, Jidu ROBO-01 was unveiled at Guangzhou Auto Show. So far, there has been no news about the delivery of set ROBO-01.
This also makes many netizens question whether Jidu Automobile faces the problem of "car-building qualification". At this year's Shanghai Auto Show, there was news from the market that Jidu Automobile was absent from the Shanghai Auto Show because it did not have the qualification to build cars. At that time, Jidu Motor responded to the news that the news was completely untrue. From the beginning of its establishment, Jidu has strictly abided by the relevant rules and regulations of the industry, and the relevant work is being carried out in an orderly manner. Jidu's decision not to participate in this Shanghai auto show is made according to the marketing rhythm of its own products, and there is no such thing as "forced not to participate in this auto show". According to the pace of the plan, we are making strenuous preparations for the upcoming important node issues and doing a good job in the cultivation of intelligent car robots.
Or in order to solve the problem of production qualification, since the second half of 2022, Jidu Automobile has carried out a series of industrial and commercial changes. On June 28, 2022, Geely Capital withdrew from the list of shareholders of Jidu Automobile Co., Ltd., and the shareholding of Baidu affiliated company Dazi County Bairuixiang Venture Capital Management Co., Ltd. was raised to 100%. In December 2022, the industrial and commercial change took place again in Jidu Automobile Co., Ltd., and the enterprise name was changed to Shanghai Power Aviation Automobile Co., Ltd., which is one of the shares of Hangzhou Ji and Yue Automotive Technology Co., Ltd. At that time, in response to the adjustment, Jidu said: this is a normal adjustment made by the company based on the needs of business development. Jidu is still jointly owned by Baidu and Geely, and the shares held by both parties remain unchanged. On August 9, Geely Motor and Baidu jointly established Ji and Yue Automotive Technology Co., Ltd., with Zhang Quan, senior vice president of Geely holding Group, and Xia Yiping, general manager of Jidu Automobile, with a registered capital of 10 million. Zhejiang Geely Industry Investment Holdings Co., Ltd. and Shanghai Power Aviation Automobile Co., Ltd., owned by Baidu, own 65% and 35% respectively. The new company's business scope includes new energy vehicle sales, auto sales, auto parts retail and so on. As for the establishment of the new joint venture, Jidu Automobile responded: "this is a normal adjustment made by the company according to the needs of business development."
Such an adjustment may be related to the qualification of Jidu Automobile. It is understood that set is Baidu Holdings, itself does not have the qualification to build a car. According to the notice on carrying out the pilot work of commissioned production of New Energy vehicles issued by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology in early 2022, both the consignor and the trustee under the contract manufacturing mode of new energy vehicles need to have production qualifications in order to produce on behalf of the industry. this is the so-called "dual qualification". In other words, if Jidu does not have the production qualification, it cannot directly entrust Geely to produce, and it is impossible to build a car in the name of "Jidu Automobile". And Jiyue Automobile, as a brand new brand under Geely, naturally can use Geely's production qualification.
It is worth noting that yesterday a group of pictures about "Jiyue 01" appeared in the announcement of 374th batch of new automobile products newly released on the website of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology. From the declaration information, we can see that the appearance of Ji Yue 01 is basically the same as that of Jidu Automobile's previous appearance of Jidu ROBO-01. In terms of body size, the length, width and height are 4853/1990/1611mm, the wheelbase is 3000mm, and the new car is positioned as medium and large SUV. In terms of new car delivery, Ji Yue said: delivery will start soon. Interestingly, after the release of the Jiyue brand, the contents of the Weibo and the official Wechat official account of the Jidu brand have been completely emptied, and the name has been changed to Jidu JIDU. The original Jidu Automobile official website has also changed its name to Ji Yue Automobile Robot. On the question of the future of Jidu Automobile, Jiyue responded that the positioning of Jidu is to focus on intelligent vehicle product definition and AI intelligent scientific and technological innovation, to create a high-level intelligent and complete solution for the Jiyue brand.
For the emergence of the Ji Yue brand, some industry insiders infer: Ji Yue will become an automotive product brand, while Jidu will be transformed into an intelligent solution. The relationship among Ji du, Ji Yue and Geely is somewhat similar to that of Huawei, AITO and Cyrus. Baidu follows the Huawei line, not building cars directly, but providing smart driving and digital cockpit solutions for the other party who is qualified to build cars. Geely, on the other hand, found a "foreign aid" to share the development costs after introducing the Flyme system.
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