Taking inspiration from big brands like Tesla is common in business. But with Xpeng, the Chinese electric car maker, they “learn” Tesla so much that it’s embarrassing. Not only is it scandalous with accusations of stealing Autopilot software code from the American automaker, now they also copy Tesla’s web design.
Informed by an anonymous person, Electrek quickly realized the surprisingly coincidence between Xpeng and Tesla’s website. Not entirely identical but the design ideas are similar, as the screenshot you see below.
Fortunately, the two cars are not too similar, but you can see the similarities between these two images. The same is a fast-moving car on the road with the cloudless blue sky in the distance. Even the name of the vehicle is put in the same position together: above the vehicle. The brand name is all located in the upper left corner of the website.
And yet, the similarities can also include the location of the parameters of the car are the same, as well as the buttons for more details along with the order button. Even the shapes of these buttons are similar.
More significantly, an older version of the Xpeng website shows that it used to have a completely different design today.
Xpeng’s website in April 2019.
Regardless of the website design similarities, both Tesla and Xpeng are currently facing each other in a lawsuit surrounding the high-end driver assistance systems of these two companies, respectively. Autopilot and Xpilot.
In 2019, Tesla began a legal process against Xpeng when it believed that the Chinese company had stolen many parts of its Autopilot source code. The lawsuit involves Guangzhi Cao, a former Tesla engineer who has now joined Xpeng.
Tesla’s lawsuit claims that Cao downloaded Autopilot’s source code and sold it to Xpeng when he started working for the Chinese electric car manufacturer. Cao denied the allegation, claiming that he had actually downloaded many parts of the source code but then deleted it before starting work at Xpeng.
Autopilot software interface of Tesla.
Image depicting Xpilot interface of Xpeng.
Last year, however, Tesla accused Xpeng of adding a similarity between Cao’s case and a previous case involving a former Chinese Apple engineer. In both cases, Tesla showed that the individuals involved were recruited by a company to capture trade secrets about electric cars.
So far, it is not uncommon for Chinese automakers to copy the designs of major brands around the world. They can do this when the host government often does not strictly enforce copyright violations. Moreover, these products are often not sold outside of China, making it more difficult to sue.
However, copying design ideas such as the Xpeng and Tesla cases is unprecedented and Xpeng will certainly have no problem with it. But if Tesla can prove that Xpeng has copied its Autopilot source code, things could change. Anyway, Xpeng seems to be not too worried so far.
Refer to The Next Web