Another supercar brand goes down the SUV rabbit hole

The LA Auto Show is my favourite car show because it ticks all the boxes that a modern car-themed event should tick in the 2020s.

You’ve got cool cars and trucks, obviously, but there’s a strong focus on technology, which is hugely important, and networking. And there’s usually wine involved. And don’t worry, at the show, wine-related stuff and test drives don’t fall on the same day. (Duh).

In 2017 (at the Auto Show), I met a guy called Satriano – that’s not actually his name but I’ll use it to respect his privacy and also because it sounds cool. Anyway, Satriano is parkour enthusiast turned motoring journalist and social media influencer and an overall cool dude. He did some social media work for a brand called Mullen, and that’s how I found out about this brand.

In 2018, one year after I first met him, I saw him again at the Show and he said to me: “Yeah, the [Mullen] Qiantu is cool but to be honest I think they’re gonna build SUVs next.” And well, he was right.

The Qiantu (Mandarin for ‘future’) was built by Mullen Technologies, an EV company based in California, and Qiantu motor, from China, and it is – or rather was – a striking 376-hp electric sportscar inspired by dragonflies, which also happens to be Mullen’s logo.

Unfortunately, no one paid attention, and so they decided to replace it with five SUVs, the first of which is called… the ‘Five’.

The market is a dictatorial force, and it eventually bends the actors involved – buyers and sellers – around it. It’s hard to tell when and where it started – although I think it’s fair to say the Cayenne helped plenty – but we’re in the middle of the SUV era, which means that most cars on the road are SUVs, most cars on sale are SUVs, and most cars in the near future will be SUVs.

So is there anything that makes the Five more interesting than the average SUV?

Well, you’ve got the cash to do it, you should definitely buy a Qiantu, which would automatically make the Five cooler. Because you can tell people you’ve got both.

If you can’t buy a Qiantu, the Five may have a couple of tricks up its sleeve, that’d make it look promising. First of all, it’s not ugly. Secondly, it features a 95 kWh battery pack, giving it a range of 325 miles, which is not bad, and it does 0-60 in 3.2 seconds. The top speed is limited to 155 mph.

The Five is expected to hit the market in 2024/2025, with a price tag of around $55,000. BUT, in pure EV tradition, Mullen is already a public company, which means you can buy stock ($MULN). That is so 2021.

This post was previously shared and written for my tribe Game Changers on Drivetribe.

This post was previously shared and written for my tribe Mercedes Owners Club on Drivetribe

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