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There will be a new Chinese car brand to compete with Toyota

Electric car maker Nio – a rival to Tesla, BMW and Audi – is preparing for a new brand to position itself on par with Toyota and Volkswagen.

Nio CEO William Li said on August 12: “The relationship between Nio and the new mainstream brand will be similar to that between Audi-Volkswagen and Lexus-Toyota. We want to provide products and services. better service and lower price than Tesla.” Li did not mention the price of the new car. Nio’s current product range is mostly above $46,400.

The ET7 sedan at Nio’s press conference in Shanghai, China, on April 19. Photo: Nio

Li also added, that the new brand will not compete with the Wuling Hongquang Mini EV – a popular low-cost urban electric car, a product of the SAIC-GM-Wuling joint venture. Hongquang Mini EV is priced from 4,500 USD.

Meanwhile, Nio’s plan is to launch and sell three new models next year, including the brand’s first sedan. In January of this year, the company introduced the ET7 sedan but only started delivering vehicles in 2022, which means this year, Nio has no new cars.

Nio’s production plant located in Hefei city, Anhui province is expected to be expanded. The automaker opened an office in Norway in May and plans to start selling vehicles in the country from the end of this year in an ambition to strengthen its global presence.

Currently, Nio produces and sells 3 SUV models, EC6, ES6, ES8. In early April, Nio reached an important milestone with the 100,000th car rolling off the production line, prompting Elon Musk to also tweet congratulation.

Not only is the rising star in the electric car market, Nio is also a pioneer in the battery exchange system. Nio currently has about 200 battery exchange stations and plans to have a system of 500 stations by the end of 2021. Many of its customers say that the main reason they choose to buy a Nio electric vehicle over another brand’s product is also because Convenient battery replacement.

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