NIO President: Chinese Smart EVs Have Iteration Time of Three Years

At the Chengdu Motor Show held on August 26, NIO, a leading Chinese new energy automobile company, unveiled its full range of products, including the ET5, ES7, ET7 and 2022 ES8, ES6 and EC6 equipped with the Alder Digital System. Qin Lihong, co-founder and President of the firm, said during a media Q&A event, “China is the most powerful market for smart electric vehicles. We must look at this market with the idea of an iteration time of about three years.”

NIO ET5 (Source: NIO)

One journalist asked, “The new SUV ES7 will be delivered in these two days. What is your expected sales volume? Will it impact the sales of the previously launched models, including the ES8, ES6 and EC6 (866)? Generally, fuel vehicles sold in the 4S stores will sell the old versions at a discount. Will NIO do so?” Qin Lihong replied, “We won’t discount. With the launch of ES7, it will have a little impact on the 866 models. They are like a middle-aged person, but we upgraded the Alder Digital System to make it ‘younger,’ and added a young man, the ES7, to this matrix to make our whole SUV lineup gain a firm foothold. We hope the ES7 will further enrich and optimize the entire SUV product line.”

Qin continued, “At this stage, for the product planning of smart electric vehicles, we don’t think that, like fuel vehicles in the past, there are popular products that have five-year iteration time and can sell for 10 years. We must look at this market with the idea of about a three-year iterative time, which in turn is a great challenge for investment, strength and decision-making of any auto companies.”

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At the Chengdu Motor Show, NIO also announced the delivery date of its ET5 model, which is in September. Qin Lihong said, “Under normal circumstances, the sales volume of the BMW 3 Series is about 12,000-15,000 units a month. The goal of NIO ET5 is to surpass this figure in the next year.”

Qin did not disclose the order numbers of the ET5, but he mentioned that some sales staff of NIO speculated that cumulative orders of the ET5 had reached nearly 200,000 units, based on its stores across China and the number of orders per capita.