Cyrus Huawei Smart Selection SF5: Chinese electric car with optional gas tank

Cyrus Huawei Smart Selection SF5: Chinese electric car with optional gas tank

Dominik Bärlocher
Zurich, on 20.04.2021
Translation: Eva Francis
Huawei has teamed up with carmaker Cyrus to launch an electric car. What’s special? The Chinese keep talking about a gas tank and an astronomically high range.

Espionage allegations, trade embargo and supply shortages: Huawei is experiencing difficult times. This doesn’t stop the company from expanding its product range with a new car. The vehicle was first shown in January and can now also be pre-ordered in China.

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The Cyrus Huawei Smart Selection SF5 is Huawei's direct attack on Tesla, VW, Ford, BMW, Mercedes, and pretty much every major car manufacturer in the world that is switching to electric cars right now.

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But there are still some ambiguities.

Electric or hybrid... or both?

International media reports are inconsistent. Is the SF5 pure electric or a hybrid? A Google translation of the car's official website speaks of a «Four Cylinder Range Extender». And:

“ It is powered by both pure electric and gasoline power generation. ”
Huawei.com, 20 April 2021

When a car runs on both electricity and gas, it’s a hybrid, not an electric vehicle (EV). Unless there are two editions of the SF5, a hybrid and an electric one, that have been combined to sound good in marketing terms. «1000 km range» and «electric car» sound pretty darn sexy together. Is Huawei hoping fans will ignore phrases such as «gas-electric synergistic range extension technology»? The newsblog Securykid refers to it as an electric vehicle with up to 180 km mileage, which can be extended to 1,000 kilometres if the fuel tank is added. This raises new questions: Is there a gas engine? «Four cylinders» would suggest that. From a mechanical point of view, that would be a lot of work. Or does the gasoline tank drive a kind of generator that supplies power to the electric motor?

Sort of like this, but just integrated into the vehicle
Sort of like this, but just integrated into the vehicle

By comparison, the Mercedes EQC is said to cover up to 471 km – in reality it’s about 400 km – and a Tesla Model 3 with Long Range Upgrade covers up to 568 km. Reaching a range of 1,000 km is hard to achieve even for vehicles with gas engines. A BMW 320d covers about 850 km on one tank of diesel and a lot of highway driving.

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76 600.–
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If the 180 km all-electric range is true, the SF5 is roughly at the everyday range of the all-electric JAC e-S2, which boasts a 250 km range.

0-100 in 4.68 seconds, 1000 km range

The performance is great, but again, we’re not sure if this applies to the hybrid or the electric model. The SF5 is said to boast an acceleration time of 4.68 seconds from 0 to 100 km/h. That’s a great time for an SUV. And, as mentioned, a range of 1000 km.

From a software point of view, things get exciting: The Cyrus Huawei Smart Selection SF5 is fully integrated into Huawei's ecosystem. It features Huawei Sound, while voice assistant Celia, navigation and communication with other smart devices is handled by Huawei HiCar. HiCar is Huawei's answer to Apple's CarPlay and Google's Android Auto.

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The entire vehicle runs on Huawei DriveOne, an EV platform. According to HuaweiCentral, this combines a micro control unit as a computer heart, a motor, a reducer, a DC converter, an on-board charger, a power distribution unit and a battery control unit.

The Cyrus Huawei Smart Selection SF5 costs between 30,500 and 34,750 francs in China, depending on the version. The SF5 is said to be available for pre-order in the Chinese version of the Huawei Mall. No details have been communicated yet regarding a market launch outside of China.

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Dominik Bärlocher
Dominik Bärlocher
Senior Editor, Zurich
Journalist. Author. Hacker. A storyteller searching for boundaries, secrets and taboos – putting the world to paper. Not because I can but because I can’t not.

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