iPhone Supplier Foxconn Leans Into EV Future
Foxconn, one of Apple’s key suppliers for the iPhone, is pushing further into electric vehicles as consumer interest ramps up.
Electric vehicle sales are expected to increase by 35% in 2023, and stricter emissions standards in the US are predicted to drive a near tenfold increase in EV sales by 2032.
Foxconn last month completed the first five “driver optional” electric smart tractors as part of its partnership with Monarch in Ohio. In its first-quarter earnings announced Thursday, Foxconn said production on the autonomous agricultural tractors has “begun smoothly” and that it is preparing to produce other vehicle models in 2024.
Foxconn added more on its EV hopes: “The goal is to find the next potential leading automaker, use more innovative and efficient processes to build vehicles, and provide customers with the most competitive production model to accelerate the trend toward electromobility.”
Foxconn’s EV goals didn’t come out of nowhere. The tech manufacturer had announced in October 2020 that it was looking to diversify its business and enter the EV market. It unveiled the Foxtron EV brand and three EVs in October 2021: the Model C electric SUV, Model E luxury sedan and Model T electric bus.
Foxconn then bought a former GM manufacturing plant at the end of 2021 to help produce the Endurance electric pickup and formed a partnership in mid 2022 to build Fisker’s Project Pear electric SUV and added the Model V electric pickup truck to its prospective portfolio.
Foxconn in January also announced a partnership with Nvidia to use Nvidia Drive Orin processors in its electric vehicles, as well as Nvidia’s AI Drive Hyperion sensor suite.
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The pivot from being mainly just an iPhone supplier to producing electric vehicles comes as Foxconn reported a plunging first-quarter net profit of T$12.8 billion ($415.9 million) on Thursday, down 56% from the T$29 billion ($942 million) reported for the same quarter last year.
Foxconn laid the blame on a T$17.3 billion ($565 million) write-down of its 34% stake in Japanese electronics company Sharp. Sharp on Thursday reported a $1.9 billion loss for the full year due to writing down the value of its panel display business and other assets, according to Reuters.
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