NIO has had its ups and downs in the past couple of years for sure, but it seems to have weathered the stormy waters and is looking forward to better days. Last night at NIO's annual "NIO Day" event, CEO William Li, made a few announcements that had the crowd of about 10,000 excited about the future of the brand. 

The first piece of good news is that, for the second time in two years, NIO is increasing the capacity of its battery packs without changing the physical dimensions. That's important because NIO offers battery swap stations for its customers, so all of its packs must be the same physical size for its customers to be able to use the service. When NIO first introduced the ES8 luxury SUV in 2018, it came with a 74 kWh battery pack. Then, in 2019, it offered an upgraded pack as an option, which had an 80 kWh capacity.

In 2020, the ES8 will be offered with a 100 kWh pack. The ES8 is not inexpensive here in China and competes with luxury electric SUVs like the Tesla Model X, Audi e-Tron, and the Mercedes EQC. The ES8 price ranges from about $67,000 to $90,000 US. NIO is positioned to be more of a luxury electric brand than say, BYD or Xpeng Motors.

NIO EC6 and ES8
NIO's ES8 is refreshed for 2020 and now has an available 100 kWh battery pack

The even better news is that existing ES8 owners can upgrade their 74 kWh pack to a new 100 kWh pack for a little under $5,000 US, or lease the new pack for about $100 per month. That announcement brought about a roar of applause from the crowd, the majority of which are NIO owners. 

NIO EC6 and ES8
The ES8 is a luxury SUV, priced at the high-end in the Chinese market and competes with Tesla, Audi, BMW, Mercedes

NIO also announced a redesigned ES8 for 2020 as well as a new 20 kW DC fast charger made for home use. In China, it's not as difficult to access higher-powered electricity supply in residential complexes as it is in the US, so getting the power supply needed for a DC fast charger at home isn't a big problem. NIO believes many customers will opt for this high-speed charger for home charging if they have one of its vehicles with the 100 kWh battery pack.

NIO CEO William Li on stage at NIO Day 2019 as he introduces the 2020 EC6 electric crossover

Perhaps the biggest news of the evening was the introduction of NIO's third car (well, it's technically its fourth if you count the EP9 supercar that it sold six copies of) the EC6 crossover.

NIO will begin selling the EC6 in mid-2020 and it will come equipped with the new 100 kWh battery pack. NIO claims the EC6's range will be 381 miles per charge, but that's using the liberal NEDC range rating. Still, that should convert to an approximate EPA range rating of 280-300 miles. That would give the EC6 an all-electric range advantage over all its electric competitors except the Tesla Model Y, of which it would be basically tied.  

NIO EC6 and ES8
The 2020 NIO EC6 looks to be a direct Tesla Model Y competitor for the Chinese market

NIO claims a 0-62-mph time of 4.7 seconds for the EC6, and that sounds reasonable considering the EC6 will most likely have the same AWD powertrain as the heavier ES6 SUV that delivers a combined 430 horsepower and 450 pound-feet of torque. Pricing and other details for the EC6 will be revealed closer to the vehicle's launch. 


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News Release – For Immediate Release

December 28, 2019

Shenzhen, China


                                             Believe in Better

                                     NIO Day 2019 in Shenzhen


●       NIO and users explore, create, grow and share joy together

●       The battery pack capacity is improved annually to enable users to flexibly upgrade on demand, thereby making “Battery as a Service”

●       The new 100kWh liquid-cooled thermostatic battery pack enables 600km+ NEDC range

●       NIO releases the all-new flagship smart SUV ES8 with longer range

●       The young, dynamic and progressive EC6, NIO's first smart electric coupe SUV, makes its global debut

●       NIO Life and Tom Dixon, one of the most innovative designers, partner to launch the “Tube” travel series


On December 28, 2019, NIO Day 2019 Believe in Better was held at Shenzhen Bay Sports Center. Over 7,300 NIO users and guests attended, and also tens of millions of people participated through 55 parallel sessions or online broadcast.


On the event, NIO released the 100kWh liquid-cooled thermostatic battery pack and 20kW DC Power Home. Deliveries of 100kWh battery pack are estimated to begin in 2020 Q4, thereby achieving a 600+km NEDC range. Flexible battery pack upgrade has always been a real demand for most users. Since the launching of the 70kWh battery pack in 2018, NIO has upgraded its battery capacity every year to satisfy users’ demands, thereby making “Battery as a Service.”


NIO released the all-new flagship smart electric SUV ES8. Featuring a 160kW permanent magnet motor and a 240kW induction motor with an intelligent electric all-wheel-drive system, the all-new ES8 holds up to 544hp and 725Nm under the hood, boasting high performance and long range. With the 100kWh liquid-cooled thermostatic battery pack, the all-new ES8 has an NEDC range of up to 580km, a major improvement in range performance.


The sharper and more modern look of the all-new ES8 inherits and also revamps the NIO family design language. In terms of interior design and texture improvement, the digital cockpit is upgraded to a 9.8-inch ultra-slim IC and an 11.3-inch HD multi-touch center display. The NOMI Mate 2.0 features an industry-first circular AMOLED display, with much larger active display area and improved experience. Additionally, the all-new ES8 comes with some advanced features such as smart charging port cover and NFC key card.

The all-new ES8 is now available on NIO app. The delivery is expected to begin in April 2020.

NIO’s third production model – the smart electric coupe SUV EC6 – made its debut. With the coupe body design, the vehicle drag coefficient is lowered to 0.27Cd. EC6 features a 2.1m2 all-glass roof. The EC6 Performance Version is equipped with a 160kW PM motor and a 240kW induction motor, and goes from standstill to 100km/h in just 4.7 seconds. With the 100kWh liquid-cooled thermostatic battery pack, the EC6 Performance Version boasts an NEDC range of up to 615km. It is estimated that NIO will announce the prices and specs of EC6 in July 2020 and begin the delivery in September.

With the support of our users, NIO community is thriving. Over 16,000 user events have been held this year where users have shared their joy and growth. NIO users were also deeply involved in the planning, directing and execution of NIO Day 2019. On the NIO Day, users in Shenzhen voluntarily organized a fleet to pick up users and guests from across the country at the airport and train stations. User volunteers were everywhere on site. It is users’ great passion and rally power for the brand that has echoed with NIO’s vision to be a user enterprise.

In 2019, NIO Life, the original lifestyle brand under NIO, has launched over 800 products. This time, it partners with Tom Dixon, one of the most innovative designers, to launch the “Tube” travel series.

Since June 2018, NIO has delivered over 30,000 vehicles. In November 2019, the sales of NIO ES6 was the top ten among sales of premium midsize SUVs in China for the third consecutive month.

Over the past five years since its inception, NIO’s constant investment in the product and technology has gained worldwide recognition. In the Inaugural China New Energy Vehicle Experience Index (NEVXI) Study released by J.D. Power in August 2019, NIO ranked highest in NEV new-vehicle quality among all brands, and its ES8 ranked highest in the midsize/large BEV segment. In EuroCarBody 2019 held in October, NIO won the third place in the premium segment. In December, NIO won the 10th place in the Top 10 Most Innovative Global Premium Brands in the 2019 Annual Innovation Report released by the Center of Automotive Management (CAM), highest among all Chinese brands.


By December 28, 2019, NIO has 66 stores nationwide, including 22 NIO Houses and 44 NIO Spaces. The sales network has covered 49 cities across the country.

“After five years of rapid growth, NIO has become more mature in corporate operations, product quality, sales performance, and user experience. We are very confident about the upcoming 2020.” said William Li, founder, chairman and CEO of NIO.

About NIO Inc. 

NIO Inc. is a pioneer in China’s premium electric vehicle market. Founded in November 2014, NIO’s mission is to shape a joyful lifestyle by offering premium smart electric vehicles and being the best user enterprise. NIO has established R&D centers and manufacturing facilities in Shanghai, Beijing, San Jose, Munich, London and five other places. NIO has initially set up the user service network with nationwide coverage in China. In 2015, NIO Formula E team won the inaugural FIA Formula E Drivers’ Championship; in 2016, NIO launched EP9, one of the world’s fastest electric vehicles, which broke the lap records and the world’s autonomous driving records in global-famous tracks like the Nürburgring Nordschleife in 2017, NIO unveiled the vision car EVE. NIO began deliveries of the ES8, a high-performance flagship smart electric SUV in China on June 28, 2018. On September 12, 2018, NIO went public on NYSE. NIO officially launched the ES6, a smart electric all-around SUV, on December 15, 2018 and began the first deliveries of the ES6 on June 18, 2019.

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Chengcheng WEI

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