With each passing year, the ties between automakers and global technology firms become stronger. More and more car companies are leaning on the electronics industry for things like infotainment tech, self-driving software, and even electric powertrain components, which is part of the reason why CES is becoming the most relevant auto show around.
Aston Martin further proved this at CES 2016 by partnering with Chinese Internet and technology company Letv, the product of which was an infotainment showcase called the Autolink Rapide S. As it turns out, CES was just the beginning.
Letv has since been rebranded as LeEco, and will partner with Aston Martin to develop a fleet of next-generation connected EVs. The two brands will work together on research and development, production, manufacturing, and even sales of the vehicles, which will be sold by Aston Martin, LeEco, and the highly-hyped Faraday Future. According to the British automaker, it will be responsible for providing whole vehicle technology, while LeEco will be responsible for powertrain and IOV components.
“Aston Martin are dedicated to developing a range of low- and zero-emission cars,” said Aston Martin CEO, Dr. Andy Palmer. “We have been encouraged by the project speed and technical depth shown by LeEco in the development of the RapidE concept towards full production. Bringing the RapidE to market by 2018 is an important milestone for both companies.”
First out of the gate will be a production version of Aston Martin’s RapidE concept, which will come to market in 2018 and be built in Gaydon, England.
Before the RapidE silently creeps into dealerships, Aston will premiere the DB11 sports car, as well as the replacements for its Vanquish and Vantage models. Each vehicle will ride on an all-new platform that will eventually revamp the majority of the Aston Martin lineup.
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- Behind the wheel of the 2019 Aston Martin DB11 Volante in Nice, France