beyonca soh weiming
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Soh Weiming began his career with Daimler-Benz AG in 1995, where he built a local team to expand the Mercedes-Benz business into China.

He joined Volkswagen Group in 2005 in China as a Member of the Board of Management, and became the Executive Vice President of Volkswagen AG in 2013.

His first foray into entrepreneurship was at Volkswagen, where he founded Mobility Asia, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Volkswagen Group, in 2018. As CEO, he rolled out a comprehensive portfolio of digital services to empower all group brands.

Then in 2021, he founded BeyonCa, aimed at revolutionising the electric vehicle (EV) space with its premium electric cars.

The BeyonCa team has over 100 years of combined experience in the premium automobile space, which gives them an edge to stand out against the competition.

Enhancing the user experience ‘beyond the car’

Soh Weiming, chairman and founder of BeyonCa
Soh Weiming, chairman and founder of BeyonCa / Image Credit: BeyonCa

“BeyonCa means ‘beyond the car’. We are an R&D-driven company focused on building super-premium smart electric vehicles,” said Weiming, 56, chairman and founder of Beyonca.

But what exactly does he mean by “smart” EVs?

Weiming explained that it’s not a matter of incorporating more technology into a vehicle, but utilising it for the benefit of drivers and passengers.

Our vision is guided by the belief that the future of the automotive industry and transportation will be found in smart EVs and the intelligent ecosystem services in, around, and beyond them.

We’re creating the next generation of super-premium focusing on our users’ current and future needs and revolutionising the human-vehicle relationship. We want to deliver a ‘new premium’ in automotive design. This means exquisite presence, quality and style, while being unique in character.

– Soh Weiming, chairman and founder of BeyonCa

While the industry is focused on adding more and more features to cars, BeyonCa is committed to integrating its resources as profoundly as possible.

They have also put health front and centre when defining the ‘smartness’ of its first super-premium EV, the Beyonca GT Opus 1.

“The BeyonCa GT Opus 1 truly signifies what BeyonCa stands for, as we set out to define the super-premium smart EV segment,” said Weiming.

He also stressed that they obsess over every detail. For instance, the ‘Light of Life’ logo in GT Opus 1 comes to life when the owner approaches and spreads its light, illuminating the front-end design.

“These details demonstrate the care we put into creating the BeyonCa experience. Whether it’s the V-shaped lines seen from different angles on the exterior or interior design that allows customers to define their individuality with luxurious and customised options, we have spared no effort to incorporate characteristics that will define a super-premium EV.”

Focusing on scenario-driven vehicle design

Most recently in the third quarter of December 2022, BeyonCa closed its Series pre-A funding round from investors including Dongfeng Motor, a Chinese state-owned automaker.

With these funds, it is investing heavily in software, AI and Health-as-a-Service (HaaS) R&D to elevate the customer experience.

“By integrating healthcare services into cars, which has never been done before, we are setting an example for innovation that goes beyond the car itself,” said Weiming.

He added that what differentiates BeyonCa and other EV companies is its focus on deep scenario-driven car making, as it evolves from just making a car to making a good car.

This path captures the art of car making, as well as the technologies to transform cars and services into a synergistic whole. Going forward, we believe that what makes a car successful will depend not only on the car itself, but also on the use-case scenarios and services beyond the car.

We believe technologies should serve a purpose, but not be the purpose itself. We have integrated a number of advanced technologies and shifted from function-driven to scenario-driven methodology.

– Soh Weiming, chairman and founder of BeyonCa

He explained that scenario building is not about packaging a myriad of dazzling functions and technologies, but utilising technologies to serve a higher purpose instead.

“For use-case scenarios, this means using the most intelligent methods to serve the varying needs of our customers while providing them with an integrated super-premium user experience.”

Uniquely, it’s banking on HaaS, as it explores smart premium design and healthcare services for the user.

“Our EV is embedded with health-related technology that can intuitively monitor your body’s needs as you travel, giving drivers and passengers an experience they can’t find in other smart vehicles,” said Weiming.

BeyonCa GT Opus 1
BeyonCa GT Opus 1 / Image Credit: BeyonCa

In particular, BeyonCa’s vehicles are equipped with sensors to continuously monitor the users’ health status during the driving and riding journey.

The artificial intelligence (AI) engine in the car keeps track of users’ health data and detects anything out of the ordinary, such as cardio issues. If there is an abnormality, its AI-powered user interface will initiate a dialogue to ensure the user is fine.

When necessary, the AI engine will summon a “cloud doctor” — a real medical doctor — to provide much-needed professional medical advice. When this occurs, the AI engine will trigger the autonomous driving function to take control and shepherd the user to safety.

“Our guiding principle is that even saving one life means the world to us,” said Weiming.

Capitalising on the growth of EVs

Despite China’s automobile market experiencing weakened demand and increased competition, the premium car segment is steadily growing, with an estimated potential annual sales of three million cars in China.

Closer to home, Singapore is a growing EV market, with the Land Transport Authority statistics showing that new EV sales increased 17-fold last year to 1,740 units, which account for 3.8 per cent of new vehicle registrations.

Spurred by this demand, it’s no surprise that BeyonCa has chosen Singapore to set up its R&D centre.

Furthermore, Singapore is deemed as an international metropolis that is also Asia’s R&D hub in many technical areas, especially in AI and health technologies.

BeyonCa GT Opus 1
BeyonCa GT Opus 1 / Image Credit: BeyonCa

It aims to roll out its first mass-produced car model next year, starting with China, then to markets in Southeast Asia, the Middle East and Europe.

As BeyonCa is focused on manufacturing super premium vehicles of the highest quality, Weiming said that they will not compromise on performing the necessary tests, such as summer and winter tests, even if this results in a longer launch timeline.

Furthermore, super-premium vehicles are primarily developed in Europe and never in China, so even finding the right suppliers to collaborate with takes time and effort.

Coupled with the Covid uncertainties, Weiming assures that BeyonCa remains committed to completing their first EV within the set timeframe.

In the years ahead, Weiming anticipates the EV market to witness explosive growth from 2025 to 2032, when high-end EVs will have a higher penetration rate, which will serve as a huge window of opportunity for BeyonCa.

Super-premium electric vehicles will grow on a S curve, peaking around 2025, and we want BeyonCa to lead this charge. Therefore, we are redefining cars with deep use-case scenarios and empowering everyone to live a better life through the exceptional experience we offer in, around, and beyond the car.

By focusing on the present and future needs of the end user, this will help to create the next generation of premium EVs and redefine the standard for this new breed of luxury EVs.

– Soh Weiming, chairman and founder of BeyonCa

Featured Image Credit: BeyonCa

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Vulcan Post aims to be the knowledge hub of Singapore and Malaysia.

© 2021 GRVTY Media Pte. Ltd.
(UEN 201431998C.)