|source: automotive news|
Electric-vehicle startup NIO launched sales of its first product, a seven-seat SUV, in Beijing on Saturday.
|The NIO ES8 has a starting price of 448,000 yuan ($67,900).|
Customers are allowed to rent the vehicle’s lithium ion battery pack, which can be swapped for fresh batteries at public stations.
Vehicles with rented batteries have a starting price of 438,000 yuan, with a monthly battery-pack rental of 1,280 yuan.
The NIO ES8 is more than 5 meters long, and its wheelbase exceeds 3 meters. The body and chassis are made of aluminum.
The SUV has a range of 355 kilometers and it accelerates from 0 to 100 km per hour in 4.4 seconds. To achieve that kind of acceleration, the vehicle’s two electric motors generate 840 Nm of torque and 480 kW of power.
NIO plans to build 1,100 stations where customers can swap batteries and 1,200 charging stations across China by 2020.
Jianghuai Automobile Co. is assembling the vehicle under contract in the east China city of Hefei.
NIO, previously known as NextEV, was incorporated in Shanghai in 2014. It has the financial backing of automotive websites Bitauto and autohome, and also Internet giants Tencent and Baidu.
It is one of dozens of EV startups that have emerged in China in the past few years.