Experts cast doubt on claimed range of North Korea’s Madusan EV

Experts cast doubt on claimed range of North Korea’s Madusan EV

North Korea, the East Asian nation notorious for its authoritarian regime, recently unveiled its very first all-electric car, called the Madusan EV, which claims to be better than any of Tesla’s existing EVs. Displayed at the Madusan Electric Vehicle Exhibition Center on the Hwasong Street in Pyongyang, the Madusan EV is a sleek and shiny four-door electric sedan that boasts a range of up to 447 miles (approximately 720 km) on a single charge.

While North Korea is proudly making bold claims about its own EV with a driving range surpassing any of Tesla’s current vehicles, international observers are expressing skepticism over the claims.

The video stated, the Madusan Electric Vehicle Technology Exchange (a segment of the Madusan Economic Federation), is importing and selling electric vehicles in collaboration with leading overseas electric vehicle manufacturers and service companies.

In the video, the organization showcased a North Korean, Madusan-branded all-electric sedan moving in the rain, claiming unmatched comfort and range. Comparing its range with that of Tesla EVs, Korean media claimed that the Tesla Model X offers a range of 439 to 478 km, much shorter than that of the new North Korean EV. The new EV was also compared with likes of the Hyundai Ioniq 6 and Kia EV6 that offer ranges of up to 524 494 km between two charges, respectively.

However, industry experts expressed skepticism and raised questions because of the disparity between the claimed range of the Madusan EV and that of well-established multinational global EV brands like Tesla and Hyundai. Moreover, the design of the Madusan EV, including features like a front grille that are typically needless for EVs, raises doubts and questions on the authenticity as well as performance of the new EV.

The claim about the reported driving range is not acceptable even if North Korea is simply selling a rebranded imported Chinese EV because there is currently no Chinese EV with a confirmed range of more than 700 km.

Some experts argued that North Korean electric sedan in question is actually a Chinese-made EV called BYD Han, which has a range of around 445 miles. Its combined WLTP-rated driving range falls to 323 miles on a single charge. Even its city range has a rating of 411 miles.

Thus, a closure inspection of the Madusan EV revealed a more complex as well as shocking truth, despite its bold debut and high-profile claims.

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