Arcfox rebadges old model, cuts price by 100,000 yuan

The Arcfox αS Premium at 329,800 yuan is nothing more than a previous model with a new badge, and a 100,000-yuan price cut.

Photo by Fan Jianlei

Photo by Fan Jianlei

By ZHOU Shuqi


Car companies are now reducing the prices of new models following a quarter of price cuts to older models to clear inventory.

Arcfox, a BAIC Group EV maker, recently launched the αS Premium at 329,800 yuan (US$ 47,000), a new model with Huawei’s HarmonyOS. The Premier is, in fact, nothing more than the previous HI with a new badge, providing an excuse to reduce the price by 100,000 yuan and throw in some freebies.

A year ago, the Arcfox αS became the first EV to use HI (Huawei Inside) - a HarmonyOS-powered display on the dash plus level-3 autonomous driving.

When Tesla fired the opening rounds of the current price war, Tesla owners reacted furiously. Many felt cheated to have paid a price that the company already planned to reduce. Showrooms were besieged, placards were waved and refunds were both demanded and delivered.

Since that turnaround, car makers planning price cuts have looked carefully in the rear-view mirror to check for disgruntled drivers approaching.

To circumvent the wrath of customers, Arcfox will refund the price difference between the HI and the Premium to customers who have already purchased the HI. The price reduction shows exactly what the market thinks of Arcfox’s partnership with Huawei, i.e., not a lot.

Changan Automobile’s Avatar 11 uses the same HI system but has recently sold twice as many as the Arcfox, something Huawei blames on the high price, slow development and poor delivery.

The price cut brings the HI/Premium onto a similar footing to Avatar. Only Changan currently uses HI, though BAIC plans to use other Huawei products. 

In November, it was reported that Huawei and BAIC would develop the “SelectCar” model, and launch it in 2024. The vehicle will be based on ArcfoxX’s existing platform but will be rebranded.

While Arcfox still plans to establish itself in the family car market with the forthcoming Kaola, the sales target of 40,000 units for the year remains a distant fantasy, following sales of just over 10,000 last year.

Huawei Inside is a bit of an awkward position. The Aito Wenjie by SERES gets to be displayed in Huawei shops. Despite declining sales, Wenjie – Huawei’s ”other system - is still more popular than Arcfox and Avatar combined.