The Chinese electric car startup Nio has started series production of its second ES6 model. Both series, the ES6 and the ES8, are currently manufactured at the Nio-JAC plant in Hefei. After Nio’s plans for a factory in Shanghai were abandoned, plans are now being made for a factory in Beijing.
The first ES6 is said to have already left the production hall. Already in the second half of June Nio wants to deliver the first vehicles to customers with pre-orders.
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The ES6 is slightly smaller than the ES8, which is also available as a seven-seater. The vehicle is available in four versions that vary in performance and battery capacity. A standard version with 320 kW and a performance version with 400 kW are available – each of which can be combined with a 70 or 84 kWh battery. The range is between 410 and 510 kilometres. The price for an ES6 standard with a small battery starts at 358,000 yuan, around 52,000 dollars. The top model is available from 448,000 yuan (65,000 dollars).
Meanwhile, Nio is now aiming for its own production facility. After the e-car manufacturer abandoned plans to build its own plant in Shanghai in March, CEO William Li now announced that he wanted to build a Nio plant in Beijing – preferably together with a production partner, but if necessary also alone. This has become possible through a planned joint venture between Nio and Beijing E-Town, an economic development agency started by the Beijing city government in 1994 to accelerate high-tech manufacturing. Nowadays the E-Town industrial zone is one of the largest in the China. The agency plans to invest 10 billion yuan (1.45 billion US dollars) in the Nio enterprise.
In the long term, Nio would benefit from its own factory. The Chinese government is currently considering tighter regulations for the country’s booming electric car industry, including the outsourcing of production to third-party companies. Current production at the JAC plant in the eastern Chinese province of Anhui has a capacity of 100,000 vehicles per year. Li said this week that this was insufficient.
Update 19.06.2019: Nio has started deliveries of its second ES6 model after series production had started a few days ago. The first vehicles of the “Premier Edition” of the five-seater E-SUV were delivered to customers in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou.
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