eastwest connect

Qin Lihong, NIO president media communication: NIO insisting on high-end | Swap station costing only 1,000 yuan per day on 8-year apportionment — offset by swap service later


Facing the new changes in the new energy vehicle industry, how should NIO face it? As the profits of car companies shrink, will NIO continue to build power stations?

Qin Lihong, co-founder and president of NIO, talked about topics and answered questions that are of interest to people at the 2023 Shanghai Auto Show communication meeting, according to report on April 19 by Qiche Quan (Auto Circle).

NIO will continue to build power swap stations

“There is no doubt that we will continue to do power swap stations. If you want to do a good job in electric vehicles, you have to do this well.” Facing the media’s questions, Qin Lihong also answered simply. In his view, although there are many power combinations in the current domestic new energy market, in addition to pure electric, hybrid, and range-extending, there is also a long-term plan for hydrogen energy. However, NIO believes that pure electric vehicles are the only visible future trend of new energy.
“If we take the next 20 years or so as a dimension, then the ultimate product is pure electric vehicles. Therefore, there is no doubt that NIO will continue to build power swap stations.”

About the construction cost of battery swap station

Regarding the question of whether the construction cost of the power swap station is too high, Qin Lihong also explained: The construction cost of each power exchange station announced to the outside world is more than 3 million yuan, including the battery cost.
But in fact, not every NIO station’s battery investment is saturated, and they will gradually increase the stock batteries according to the number of stocks. “Even if NIO’s power swap station cost is more than 3 million yuan, However, based on the calculation of 8 years, the apportionment is about 1,000 yuan per day, which is not much. It is completely possible to achieve fixed cost allocation through the battery swap service.”

Refuse to compromise and only do mainstream high-end

“ET5 is NIO’s cheapest car. At least none of the current plans are cheaper than it. This means that there will be no more for at least three or four years.”

With the trend of new energy vehicles comes market competition. Some media have speculated whether NIO will consider launching products with lower prices, such as when adding a mid-to-high-end product line. Qin Lihong’s attitude made it clear that NIO still needs to focus on the high-end market.

“NIO’s price positioning is 300,000 to 600,000 yuan, which is the mainstream high-end market.

“The average transaction price of NIO’s first-generation ES6 exceeds 400,000 yuan.
Therefore, what NIO really wants to compare is the SUV market with a price of about 400,000 and higher.”

“The accurate positioning of the ES6 in the market segment should be called a high-end medium-sized SUV. If power is not considered, it should be at the same level as the BMW X3, Audi Q5, and Mercedes-Benz GLC.” In Qin Lihong’s view, high-end products also need to be cost-effective. NIO’s products are very competitive, which can be felt from the price of ES6 and subsequent products. In addition to products, NIO also has services, which are the fulcrums of competition.”

In addition, Qin Lihong expressed his disapproval of some people’s practice of comparing the sales of models with different prices. He believes that “the high-end has a high-end scale, the mid-range has a mid-range scale, and the low-end has a low-end scale.” It is not suitable for everyone to use sales as a one-sided measure. For example, comparing the scale of Wuling Hongguang mini worth tens of thousands of yuan with cars worth hundreds of thousands, this comparison is extremely imprecise.

Ready for the final

“Around 2025 is the start of the smart EV finale in our minds.” In Qin Lihong’s view, although the new energy market is relatively introverted this year, But the real final has not yet begun. Why do you say that? First of all, with the awakening and development of mainstream foreign auto brands, those centuries-old brands are fully committed to new energy. It is the moment when the “elephant is awakened”, and the energy that explodes is also amazing.

Secondly, the intelligent route must be determined, from product specifications to game rules, there are rules and regulations. “If the rules of the game are determined, the next competition is endurance and execution.”

“In the 2019 auto show, everyone had mixed opinions on new energy. By this year, there are basically new energy vehicles. It has only been four years since everyone talked about it and took action. It can be seen that smart electric vehicles are the main theme of the product. China will become the world’s most important innovation center on the track of new energy.”

Regarding the development trend of new energy vehicles, Qin Lihong feels gratified and still has a long way to go. But for future competition, they are confident and uncompromising, and they have been making adequate preparations over the years.