Since the start of 2023, a price war has broken out in China’s automotive industry, leading to intensified market competition. This has made it increasingly challenging for car manufacturers with consistently low sales and inadequate self-sustaining capabilities.
Qiantu Motor’s WeChat mini program’s “buy car” page was recently displaying a blank screen, making it impossible for users to log in and book vehicles through this channel. As per Time Finance, Qiantu Motor staff have confirmed that orders for the K50 and K20 models are temporarily suspended.
The K50 is Qiantu Motor’s first mass-produced car, marketed as a pure electric supercar with a price tag exceeding 600,000 yuan ($87,111). It entered production in 2018 but has only sold 131 units in the year and a half since its launch. In June of last year, Qiantu released the K20 as a small electric sports car with pre-sale prices ranging from 86,800 to 149,800 yuan. However, despite being available for pre-sale for some time now, the vehicle has yet to be officially delivered to customers.
Qiantu Motor was established in 2015 and had a promising start. It successfully set up a production base in Suzhou, Jiangsu Province and obtained two production qualifications, which is rare for new car companies. However, the company faced wage arrears issues starting from the second half of 2019. This was followed by reports of broken capital chains and delayed payments to suppliers. After several years of silence, Qiantu Motor returned to the market last year with K20 but has been unable to deliver due to suspending orders. These setbacks have cast doubt on its future development prospects.
Evergrande Auto has warned that it may have to suspend production if it fails to secure additional liquidity. The group plans to launch several flagship models and achieve mass production if it can obtain financing of more than 29 billion yuan in the future. At present, Evergrande Auto’s Hengchi 5 model is available for purchase at a price of 179,000 yuan. Since its delivery began in late October last year, over 900 units have been sold.
Enovate has announced the shutdown of its operations. Enovate (Changsha) Group Co., Ltd. issued a notice stating that certain positions within the company will be suspended from April 1 due to financial constraints and production and sales plans. There were rumors that Enovate would receive a new financing of 750 million yuan for employee salaries and factory resumption, but with the Changsha plant now officially closed, there may be uncertainties regarding this funding.
Aiways, a company that has primarily focused on developing its overseas market, is facing financial difficulties. A screenshot of an email from the “human resources department” of Aiways delaying the payment of March salaries circulated online on April 10. Being relatively unknown domestically, Aiways only sold a total of 84 vehicles in China during the first two months before 2023.
Niutron, which offered a full refund last year due to its inability to deliver, is currently experiencing issues with accessing its Weibo accounts, official apps and websites. The root cause of this problem lies in the fact that Niutron has been unable to obtain the necessary qualifications for car manufacturing.
WM Motor has been facing financial difficulties since the end of last year, leading to layoffs, salary reductions, factory shutdowns, supplier disruptions and store closures. In an effort to save itself from these challenges, WM Motor announced in March that over 100 dealership showrooms across the country will gradually resume normal services soon. However, the specific implementation plan is yet to be observed.