Nio ES8: Tesla Model X competitor for half the price
The Electric vehicles industry is on a roll! It’s great to see companies other than Tesla coming up with their offerings. And not everyone can afford a Tesla, and we have good news (especially if you live in China). NIO has launched their first mass-production electric vehicle, called the Nio ES8. What makes it so special? It’s an all Electric SUV with a 350+ mile range and a price tag of less than $70,000!
The Nio ES8 goes into production next year, with a bunch of smart features. It is a 7-seater (2-3-2 config) Dual-motor SUV, like the Tesla Model X. The body and chassis are all aluminum, with an active air suspension. There’s a heads-up display that projects on to the front windshield, and also wireless chargers. The base model will have a range of 355 miles and goes from 0 to 100 kmph in 4.4 seconds. The engine can put out 480kW of power or about 644 horsepower. The battery is rated at 70kWh, which apart from recharging, can be easily swapped out at dedicated stations. They plan on having over a thousand of such stations by 2020.
And all that power is also backed with smart software. They have a virtual assistant called NIO Pilot, powered by MobileEye’s EyeQ4 chip (they were a partner of Tesla, earlier) to help with adaptive cruise controls, auto emergency braking, lane departure warning, blind spot detection and more via future OTA updates. All of this is done using the 5 cameras, 4 radars, and 12 ultrasonic sensors.
The company was founded only in 2014, and is already backed by major Chinese companies, and just secured a $1 Billion funding and is also considering entering the US market. The base model starts at $68,000 or RMB4,48,00 (~INR 45 lacs). It will get an even lower price tag with subsidies from the Chinese authorities. Looks promising to me, and glad to see more companies try their hand at EVs.