Vinfast's first vehicles are a sedan and SUV based on the previous generation of the BMW 5-Series and X5. The electric SUV will be the first vehicle from the company developed from the ground up. The SUV design has been designed by Italdesign. The EV will be shown during the L.A. Auto Show in November whose design will feature a design by Pininfarina. The company is also known to be developing electric scooters and commercial vehicles.
Vietnamese auto startup VinFast plans to invest up to US$2 billion to break into the lucrative United States auto market. Vietnam’s richest man and billionaire Pham Nhat Vuong, who is in charge of the new automaker, is so intent on exporting electric vehicles to the US in 2021 that he’s using his own funds to achieve it.
The car was first unveiled in 2018, It is a battery-electric crossover SUV with a range of 300 miles. Vinfast will start road tests of its EV in January 2021 and mass production the following July. Helping with the development is German engineering outfit Edag.
An electric vehicle (EV) is expected to follow by the end of this year, but the plant is also already producing e-scooters. VinFast set up a joint venture with battery specialist LG Chem earlier this year for the production of lithium-ion batteries for the forthcoming EV and is building a facility adjacent to the main assembly plant.
The batteries will be sourced from South Korea's LG Chem as part of a deal forged in 2019. Vinfast and LG Chem have already established a joint-venture battery plant adjacent to Vinfast's vehicle plant in Hai Phong, Vietnam.
The Siemens portfolio it is using includes Teamcenter software to develop a digital twin of the production process. Digital twins are replicas of physical systems that allow data to be transmitted seamlessly to optimize manufacturing.
VinFast follows a long list of Chinese automakers that have also had ambitions to sell vehicles in the US going back more than a decade. Though the plans have yet come to fruition, Guangzhou Automobile Group Co., Zotye Automobile Co. and others have set up local sales units and research and development operations to show just how serious they are. Some Chinese brands have also exhibited at American auto shows in recent years.
The company targets production of as many as 500,000 vehicles a year by 2025. It also makes electric scooters.
Vietnam’s government policy to reduce CO2 emission (-8% by 2030) and ease public health concerns is currently mostly geared towards improving the urban public transportation system and not towards hybrid or EVs.