Tesla Meets Knight Rider: The Youxia X Electric Sedan


Youxia Motors' striking X sedan might look like a Tesla Model S but its inspiration according to the company's CEO is KITT, the talking Firebird driven by David Hasselhoff in the hit 1980s television series Knight Rider!




Though the original series only ran from 1982 through 1986 in the United States, a raft of spin-offs, made-for-television movies and video games have kept KITT in the public eye on a global stage.

Thus when 28-year-old Chinese entrepreneur and huge Knight Rider fan Huang Xiuyuan (above) decided he was going to start up a car company, it's no surprise Youxia Motors' first model bears a notable resemblance to KITT.




KITT's most recognizable feature was the Cylon-like orange scanner bar and the Youxia X replicates this signature attribute. Technology has advanced a ways since the early Eighties, however, and the Youxia X's grill now sports a holographic screen that can display a set of KITT-like running lights, the semi-triangular Youxia corporate logo, or even a cute cat's head.




The Youxia X isn't all show, mind you, it's designed to go: company-supplied specs state the car's electric motor is rated at 348hp and 440nm while purchasers can select from a 40kWh, 60kWh, or 85kWh battery.

The latter option provides a range of up to 460 kilometers (285 miles) and it takes just 5.6 seconds to accelerate from 0 to 100kph. For those who are in a rush, just 30 minutes worth of charging yields a range of up to 270 kilometers or just shy of 170 miles.




Yet another surprise lurks inside: a 17.3 inch tall touch screen dominates the center console. In addition to a built-in WiFi hotspot and TV capability, the dash-tab runs on software dubbed “KITT OS”, based not-so-loosely on Google Android 5.0 and promising full connectivity with Android and Apple devices.

The system's coolest feature is a drop-down menu offering a selection of piped-in engine sounds – as an EV, the Youxia X runs in virtual silence. Choose from a trio of Ferrari models (488 GTB, Sergio, and LaFerrari) or the Jaguar F-Type for your traveling music!




The Youxia X is certainly an ambitious undertaking and although CEO Huang Xiuyuan has hired fifty trained engineers to see the project through, the projected late-2016 production date and early-2017 delivery schedule seems a tad optimistic.

Die-hard Knight Rider fans doubtlessly wait, however, and gladly plunk down the 200,000 to 300,000 yuan ($32,000 to $48,000) sticker price when their ride is ready. (via Car News China)