The Chinese electric car manufacturer Nio has started production of its third model after the ES8 and ES6. The start of production at the indebted company is also made possible thanks to a framework agreement with the city of Hefei, which is providing Nio with a billion-euro cash injection.
The EC6, announced in January, is an SUV coupé that is to be delivered from September onwards and offered with three different battery capacities: 70, 84 and 100 kWh. The latter option is a new liquid-cooled battery package from Nio, which will give the EC6 a range of 615 kilometres – albeit according to NEFZ.
The EC6 is powered by two electric motors, with 160 and 240 kW. Nio does not intend to reveal more precise technical data and prices for the new model until July. Deliveries are then to start in September.
In the relatively short press release, the list of politicians from the city of Hefei and Anhui region present at the event takes up almost as much space as the description of the EC6 itself. With good reason: on the same day, the car manufacturer and representatives of the city signed a framework agreement that will bring in more than ten billion yuan (around 1.3 billion euros) for Nio. In return, the company has undertaken to build factories and research centres in the city.
The financially troubled company has not yet implemented plans for a factory of its own – initially, a factory in Shanghai was planned, later in Beijing. The two previous models ES8 and ES6 as well as the new EC6 are produced in Hefei by a joint venture between Nio and the local car manufacturer JAC. However, the financial situation at Nio has been tense for months; last year, co-founder Jack Cheng also withdrew from the top management team. If Nio manages the turnaround, the company will probably stay in Hefei – the JAC joint venture or not.
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