It's easy to dismiss Xiaomi as just another copycat Chinese carmaker trying to build its first electric vehicles, but that couldn't be further from the truth. Although the name is mostly unknown in the US, it's a powerhouse pretty much everywhere else in the world. Its first electric vehicle, the SU7, is the company's "Model S moment," with the major difference that, unlike Tesla, Xiaomi has some great models to look up to.
Since Xiaomi is virtually nobody in North America, I think it's worth discussing the company's roots, mission, and accomplishments. Xiaomi was founded in 2010 by entrepreneur and angel investor Lei Jun, and one year later, it launched its first smartphone. It took Xiaomi only three years to conquer the largest smartphone market share in China. The asset-light company did not manufacture its own smartphones, following Apple in this regard and using contract manufacturers like Foxconn. It also started with no stores, selling its smartphones exclusively online.

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