Already present in Norway since May 2021, the electric car manufacturer Nio officially launches its arrival in Europe, with three different models. It took place last Friday in Berlin, Germany, one of the top four target countries, along with the Netherlands, Denmark and Sweden.
During the Berlin event, Nio presented the brand’s three high-end electric models. There are two sedans, the ET7 and ET5, as well as an electric SUV, the EL7. It should be noted that the SUV, which originally took the name ES7, was renamed EL7 (for the European market) to avoid a long and costly conflict with the manufacturer Audi, which blames Nio for too much resemblance to its S7 sedan. Already, in June 2022, Audi had filed a lawsuit against the same Nio for violation of trademark law. The German considered that the names of the Nio models, in this case ES6 and ES8, could lead to confusion with their own models, the S6 and S8.
Contrary to what we announced in May 2021, the new ET7 electric sedan, with a 150 kWh battery and a range of 850 km, will be well marketed in Europe. This electric sedan, measuring 5.09 m long, 1,987 m wide and 1,505 m high, offers a wheelbase of 3.06 m. Aesthetically, this ET7 is a mix of Tesla Model S and Audi.
The sedan incorporates two electric motors, one with 180 kW (240 hp) permanent magnets at the front and the second (induction) with 380 kW (510 hp) at the rear. Total power is 480 kW (643 hp) for a torque of 850 Nm. 0 to 100 km/h is reached in 3.9 s.
The set is powered by a 150 kWh battery that offers a range of 1000 km (NEDC) or 850 km (WLTP cycles). Please note that this 150 kWh battery will only be available from Q4 2022.
Meanwhile, the ET7 will also be offered with “smaller” batteries: 70 kWh (500 km NEDC) and 100 kWh (700 km NEDC). Remember that the NEDC standard is purely theoretical and does not reflect actual conduct like the European WLTP or EPA standard for the United States.
As for the ET5, the second sedan, it takes up the design of the ET7 with a touch of sportiness in the design. Under the chassis, the ET5 houses two electric motors of 150 kW (204 hp at the front) and 210 kW (285 hp at the rear) for a total output of 360 kW (490 hp and torque of 700 Nm). The exercise from 0 to 100 km/h is done in 4.3 s. On the battery side, the ET5 will offer three different capacities: 75 kWh (500 km), 100 kWh (+700 km) and 150 kWh (+1000 km).
Finally, the EL7 is a five-seater SUV based on the new NT 2.0 platform, unlike the brand’s first electric models. It measures 4.90 m in length, offers 1.99 m in width and 1.72 m in height. The SUV incorporates two electric motors: 180 kW (245 hp) at the front and 300 kW (408 hp) at the rear.
Presumably, the EL7 will come with two different battery capacities: 75 and 100 kWh. Despite everything, the Chinese brand also evokes the 150 kWh. The SUV offers the possibility to charge (V2L) other electrical devices and tow up to two tons.
Subscription system and interchangeable battery
One of the peculiarities of the Chinese manufacturer is the subscription that allows customers “choose the vehicle that best suits your needs” according to durations ranging from 1 to 60 months. This program includes “full insurance, maintenance, winter tyres, spare car and spare battery, plus battery upgrade option”.
While attractive on paper, this monthly subscription is relatively expensive. So, for the Nio ET5 model, it will cost €999/month in Germany, €1089/month in the Netherlands, 10,899 SEK (992€) in Sweden and 8499 DKK (1143€) in Denmark.
Finally, Nio has installed battery change stations that can allow electric cars to “to fill” in just a few minutes. After a successful experience in China with 500 stations, Norway was the first country to host a Power Swap Station (PSS). By the end of 2022, Nio plans to build 20 battery change stations in Europe. By 2023, that number is expected to reach 120. By 2025, Nio aims to build 1,000 Power Swap stations outside China, most of them in Europe.
This battery exchange system completes the network of 380,000 charging points in Europe accessible with Nio’s NFC cards. For the occasion, the Chinese manufacturer partnered with Shell. The partnership includes installing 100 battery change stations in China by 2025 and operating pilot stations in Europe by 2022. In addition, Shell Recharge Solutions’ charging network in Europe will be made available to Nio electric car users. Finally, the two partners will explore many themes around vehicles, such as fleet management and home charging.
Change in three minutes
Developed in partnership with Sinopec [ou China Petroleum and Chemical Corporation, NDLR], the Nio Power Swap Station 2.0 is capable of changing up to 312 batteries per day. The system is fully automatic. Just press a button on the car’s touchscreen and it automatically positions itself in the station, equipped with 239 sensors, such as the Park Assist system. The engine then removes the car battery from under the floor to replace it with a charged battery. The operation takes only about three minutes. The station has a storage capacity of 13 batteries, which are recharged until the next use.
As for a possible arrival in France, Nio has not yet decided. The successes of MG Motors, Aiways and Seres can lead you to take a closer look at our market. However, despite strong growth, the all-electric market share for us remains around 12% for now.