Ready for a confusing name game? LeEco is the new brand for the company formerly known as LeTV, a giant Chinese tech company best known in its home nation for TVs, smartphones, and a streaming service akin to Netflix. LeEco wants to get involved in markets outside of China, and it's interested in the automotive sphere, so the tech giant has invested in U.S.-based electric car startup Faraday Future. LeEco has also partnered with Aston Martin, which is working on an all-electric version of the Rapide sedan.
And now, LeEco has of its own. Revealed today, and destined for a full debut at the Beijing Auto Show on April 24th, it packs a lot of the same features promised by Faraday Future and so many others. The LeSEE concept is envisioned for a future fleet of autonomous ride-sharing mobility machines, which you can hail when needed like driverless taxis—a lot like Faraday's own presumed business model.
Being a concept car, the LeSEE has plenty of daydream tech you probably won't see in real life anytime soon. Like, apparently, rear seats that mold to the shape of each passenger's own body, and some kind of facial recognition and self-learning tech, included for reasons that aren't exactly clear.
LeEco's position here makes sense, in one very specific way: the LeSEE concept, like Faraday Future's autonomous car design, has plenty of digital screens for passengers to interact with as they're autonomously driven to their destination. Since nobody's driving, and the people inside may even be strangers in an autonomous carpool, the vehicle occupants are a built-in audience to consume digital content, LeEco's number one profit generator.
Will LeEco end up in the bizarre position of competing with itself? If LeSEE and Faraday Future both end up with successful autonomous electric taxis trundling around U.S. cities, that's theoretically possible—even if it feels like a far-off future.