Taiwan's Hon Hai Technology Group, better known as Foxconn or simply the iPhone maker, would like to become for Tesla what it is for Apple now: a contract manufacturer.
Young Liu, the CEO and chairman of Foxconn, revealed that the company wants to one day build cars for Tesla, CNBC reports. Whilst Foxconn has just unveiled two electric vehicle prototypes on October 18—the Foxtron Model V pickup truck and Model B crossover—it doesn't want to sell its own-brand cars.
The Taiwanese company aims to push further into EV manufacturing by designing and manufacturing vehicles for other automakers. It already has EV manufacturing deals in place with Yulon Motor in Taiwan as well as Lordstown Motors and Fisker in the US, where it owns and operates GM's former assembly plant in Lordstown, Ohio.
That said, the company's ambitions go beyond working with startups. By 2025, Foxconn is targeting 5 percent market share globally of electric vehicle manufacturing, the CEO said, adding that he hopes Tesla will be among its customers. "I hope one day we can do Tesla cars for Tesla," Liu said.
Of course, Tesla doesn't really need the services of a contract manufacturer right now, as it has lots of unused production capacity at its new plants in Austin, Texas, and Berlin, Germany. However, things may change in the future as the US EV maker has set a goal to sell 20 million electric vehicles a year by the early 2030s.
Foxconn claims that it can cut the design time of a car in half and reduce the development cost by a third for automakers wanting to use its services. Liu said he wants Foxconn's customers to sell "a lot of EVs."
The Taiwanese firm has built a name for itself over the last few decades in consumer electronics manufacturing and assembly, most notably as a maker of Apple's iPhone at its factories in China. But the company is now looking to branch out into new areas, especially electric cars.
Foxconn has been ramping up its EV business over the past two years and unveiled its first three prototype electric vehicles last year, two of which are already on the roads. The Model T electric bus is part of a public transportation system in Taiwan, while the Model C crossover has become the Luxgen n7 production model sold by Yulon Motor.
The five concept EVs that Foxconn has build so far prove the company "can design and build EVs that are good-looking and can stand up to safety," according to Liu. The company's goal with these vehicles is to showcase its capabilities at a time when many EV startups are jumping into the market.