Changan’s Deepal plans to sell 450,000 EVs in 2024 globally

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Deepal will accelerate its expansion to European and ASEAN markets, aiming to sell 450,000 electric vehicles globally next year, announced today by Deepal’s CEO, Deng Chenghao.

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Moreover, Deepal tapped the new overseas market today as Deepal S07 and Deepal L07 sedan were unveiled in Thailand. Both cars will be assembled in Changan’s new EEC plant in Rayong province, which started construction this month and should be finished in early 2025.

During the unveiling ceremony, Anutin Charnvirakul, Deputy Prime Minister of Thailand, spent over 20 minutes with Deepal S07. Both S07 and L07 will have a Thai public debut at the 2023 Thailand International Auto Show later this month.

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L07 is selling as SL03 in China, a Model 3 competitor with three powertrain options: BEV, EREV, or FCEV. EREV stands for an extended-range electric vehicle, a type of PHEV where ICE is not connected to the wheels and only works as a power generator for the battery. FCEV stands for Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle and is a hydrogen-powered car.

Deepal SL03 sedan, rear view.

Deepal S07 sells as S7 in China, and it is a mid-size SUV competing with Model Y. It is the company’s second model and was launched on June 25.

Deepal is an electric brand under Changan, China’s oldest automaker and smallest of the ‘big four’ of state-owned automobile companies (the other three are SAIC, FAW, and Dongfeng).

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Chenghao also announced that Deepal will launch two new products in 2024. As local media Autohome cited sources familiar with the matter, the two new products will be jointly developed with Huawei. Changan and Huawei signed a memorandum of cooperation yesterday. Deng Chenghao commented on this, saying, “Let’s build a leading smart electric vehicle together and empower Deepal to become a world-class electric vehicle brand.”

Huawei is not Changa’s only new partner. Last week, the Chongqing-based automaker signed an agreement with EV startup Nio regarding its Power Swap Stations (PSS) network, hinting one of Changan’s EV brands will launch a vehicle with a swappable battery. Aside from Deepal, Changan also operates EV brand Avatr, a former joint venture with Nio, which withdrew from the project in 2020 and was later replaced by CATL.

Changan has big plans with Deepal. Aside from European expansion, the company plans to open “thousands of order and service centers” by 2025. Deepal’s long-term goal is to reach 1.5 million annual sales.

On October 27, Deepal launched an updated version of their two-only models – SL03i and S7i in China. The price is pretty low, which is not surprising for state-owned enterprises: SL03 starts at 178,900 yuan (25,000 USD), and S7 starts at 184,900 yuan (25,900 USD).

Interestingly, many of Changan’s EVs are not being designed in China. Deepal S7 and SL03 were designed in Turin, Italy, by the team led by ex-GM veteran Bertrand Bach, current Global Design Director at Changan. Avatr brand has a design center in Munich, Germany.

Deepal delivered 15,513 vehicles in October, and since the beginning of the year, 102,417 (January – October). Deepal’s goal for 2023 was to deliver 200,000 vehicles.

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