Chinese electric vehicle maker launches NIO

20 December, 2017, 01:30 | Author: Marie Harrington
  • Nio Launches Electric Car Costs Half Of Tesla X

This is only about half the price for Tesla's Model X, which starts at 836,000 yuan, or $128,660, after import duties in China.

"Tesla is a company founded in the era of the internet while NIO was born in the era of mobile internet".

Nio, founded three years ago by internet entrepreneur William Li, is among a group of startups that have taken advantage of central government incentives, including subsidies, for the electric auto industry.

According to the Global EV Outlook 2017 report by the International Energy Agency, China was responsible for 40% of global electric vehicle sales in 2016, selling double the number of EVs sold in the United States.

Competition is heating up for Tesla in the world's biggest market for electric cars. "Maybe Tesla will sell less.after our product is out". These companies want to rival Tesla with smart electric vehicles that feature internet connectivity and new technologies, and by leveraging their understanding of Chinese consumers.

The ES8 will also have an advanced driver assistance system, called NIO Pilot. It sounds like NIO thought of everything, now all that's left is to actually go and deliver everything. "Right now we don't have information to share on that", Li told CNBC.

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Nio plans to build over 1,100 "Power Swap" charging stations and deploy over 1,200 "Power Mobile" vehicles by 2020, it added.

Building that infrastructure "will be a big challenge in China", Qin said.

At its launch on Saturday, Nio introduced a battery charging plan with a rental subscription set at 1,200 yuan ($181) a month. And the high population density in larger Chinese cities means people can't install charging facilities in their own garages, he explained. ES8 owners will also be able to take advantage of a battery swap service, which will allow the pack to be exchanged for a new one in three minutes at a dedicated station.

Meanwhile, many of China's top traditional carmakers are pouring resources into the technology, and a flurry of worldwide auto giants have announced plans recently to make electric vehicles in China. The SUV has officially launched in China and has a base price of RMB 448,000 (about $68,000) and has an available battery rental plan.

The company is also reportedly getting US$1 billion in a new round of funding led by Tencent, which has also invested in Tesla.

- Steven Jiang contributed reporting.

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