Nio, a prominent electric vehicle (EV) manufacturer listed on the NYSE, has initiated customer deliveries of its latest ES8 model in China. The company had only recently started accepting orders for its flagship SUV, and the official commencement of deliveries was announced by Nio on the popular social media platform Weibo.
As of now, Nio has not disclosed specific details regarding the number of initial deliveries for the new ES8. The highly anticipated model was unveiled by the EV maker on Nio Day 2022, which took place on December 24, 2022. The new ES8 represents Nio's first production vehicle to transition to the advanced NT 2.0 platform, showcasing the brand's commitment to innovation and technological progress.
The upgraded ES8 is available in three versions: the regular version, Executive Edition, and Signature Edition. Following price adjustments made over the past few months, the starting prices for these versions, inclusive of the battery, are now RMB 498,000 ($68,900), RMB 518,000, and RMB 598,000, respectively.
Notably, customers opting for the BaaS (battery as a service) plan can acquire the vehicle at more affordable rates. The starting prices for the three versions under the BaaS plan are RMB 428,000, RMB 448,000, and RMB 470,000, respectively, with a monthly battery rental cost beginning at RMB 980.
However, it should be acknowledged that despite being one of the top-quality models available in the market, the new ES8, being Nio's highest-priced offering, is unlikely to contribute significantly to the company's sales figures. According to the China Passenger Car Association (CPCA), retail sales of vehicles priced above RMB 400,000 in China accounted for just 3 percent of the total passenger car sales, amounting to 53,000 units out of 1.74 million units sold in May.
Before the launch of the upgraded ES8, its predecessor experienced record-breaking sales in December 2021, with 2,782 units sold, representing 26.5 percent of Nio's total sales of 10,489 units for that month. However, since January 2022, sales of the ES8 have remained below the 2,000-unit mark, with the more affordable ES6 model constituting the majority of Nio's monthly sales.
Nio introduced the new ES6 on May 24, with a starting price of RMB 338,000, inclusive of the battery. Deliveries of the new ES6 commenced on the same day as its launch.
During its first-quarter earnings report on June 9, Nio projected second-quarter deliveries ranging between 23,000 and 25,000 vehicles, indicating an estimated delivery of 10,187 to 12,187 vehicles in June. The company remains optimistic about its performance, despite the pricing dynamics and market conditions, as it aims to solidify its position in the competitive EV industry.
Nio's initiation of deliveries for the latest ES8 model underscores its commitment to meeting the evolving demands of Chinese consumers while prioritizing technological advancements in the realm of sustainable transportation.