The special thing about the Leapmotor C01 is not the car itself, but the way the battery is installed in the vehicle: the C01 uses the so-called cell-frame approach.
Chinese electric car maker Leapmotor has introduced the C01 electric sedan, its first production model equipped with cell-chassis technology. If you don’t know Leapmotor, it’s a Chinese manufacturer that has been around since 2015. They made a first presentation at CES 2018, then they marketed a whole range of 100% electric cars in China.
The C01 is an intermediate sedan over five meters long and offered in four range options between 500 and 717 kilometers according to the Chinese CLTC standard. The special thing, however, is not the car itself, but the way the battery is installed in the vehicle: as mentioned before, the C01 uses the so-called cell-to-frame approach.
What is Cell-Chassis Technology (CTC)?
The cell-frame technology (CTC) means that the battery modules are installed directly in the vehicle body. Individual cells are therefore always surrounded by group accommodation. However, the module box is no longer integrated with the battery box. This installation should reduce the number of components by 20% and the weight of the car by up to 15 kilograms.
Another important figure: according to Leapmotor, the space dedicated to batteries can be optimized, it can thus be reduced by 14.5% on this model. In other words, more cells fit in the same space.
The largest possible battery configuration in the C01 is 90 kWh. With the 200 kW motor, a maximum range of 717 kilometers is therefore possible. With the 400 kW all-wheel-drive version, which uses two motors, the range is 630 kilometers. Moreover, this version can accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in 3.7 seconds.
The C01 also has some connectivity features to appeal to Chinese customers. With three screens, the car uses the chip Qualcomm Snapdragon 8155. In addition, this car is equipped with facial recognition. The vehicle can be unlocked and started via a system similar to Face ID, up to 25 parameters in total can be assigned to the driver via facial recognition.
Another interesting thing: the operating system is Android-based, so the infotainment is supposed to be compatible with most Android apps. For Apple users, unlocking and locking will also be possible via Siri. Finally, for level 3 semi-autonomous driving, the C01 is equipped with the “Leapmotor Pilot“.
Leapmotor is already accepting pre-orders for the C01 in China. The price range is between 180,000 and 270,000 yuan, equivalent to 25,400 to 38,000 euros. Regarding the European market, Leapmotor has not announced any plans for the moment. This Leapmotor C01 will not only come up against Tesla, it also faces the Nio ET7 and the Xpeng P7.
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