The Chinese electric car manufacturer Xpeng has announced the construction of another plant. It is to be built in Wuhan and will have an annual capacity of 100,000 cars. A timetable for the start of construction or even production has not yet been given.
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The planned area covers over 733,000 square metres and also includes research and development facilities. This would be Xpeng’s third production facility in China following the existing plant in Zhaoqing and the new plant in Guangzhou, whose construction Xpeng had started in September 2020.
The Guangzhou plant is scheduled to go into operation at the end of 2022. If the factories are of similar size and are built at a comparable pace, the first Xpeng could be built in Wuhan during 2023, possibly in the second half of the year. Xpeng had not mentioned any production capacity for the Guangzhou plant at the time, but Wuhan, like the existing Zhaoqing factory, is expected to be able to build 100,000 vehicles per year.
CEO He Xiaopeng justified the decision for Wuhan by saying that the city is strategically located and “as a hub for car manufacturing and distribution” will “further enhance” the company’s supply chain management, sales and distribution network in the future.
Wuhan is home to the headquarters of state-owned carmaker Dongfeng. In addition, the city of 11 million people – the most populous city in central China – is connected to the high-speed rail network and has several highway links and is also considered a transport hub for inland waterways.
At the beginning of this year, Xpeng president Brian Gu stated that in the future, the production of electric cars in Europe is also conceivable. A decision on this is expected to be made in the first half of 2021.
Update 02 August 2021
Xpeng has started construction of the additional plant in Wuhan announced in April. It is to have an annual capacity of 100,000 e-cars. However, a report by Gasgoo, referring to Xpeng, now mentions one million square metres – in April, Xpeng had still stated 733,000 square metres.
According to founder and CEO He Xiaopeng, the plant will build vehicles based on the third generation of the company’s “intelligent vehicle platform”. It is to become Xpeng’s first globally deployed platform. It is not yet known which vehicles will then be built in Wuhan based on this platform. With the E-SUV G3i and the sedan P7, Xpeng currently has two series models – the third model, the smaller sedan P5, has already been presented.
Among other things, the plant is to receive equipment for stamping, welding and painting, and the batteries are also to be assembled there – before they are installed in the vehicles during final assembly. Xpeng also wants to manufacture the electric drives on-site.
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