NIO CEO Li Bin Considers Collaborating with European Local Companies to Establish Factories

On May 24, NIO opened its first showroom in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. In an interview, NIO‘s CEO, Li Bin, stated that despite the uncertainty of whether the European Union will impose tariffs on Chinese electric cars, NIO plans to continue expanding in Europe.

Li Bin said that electric cars are very important for the positive development of the environment and should not be used as a political target. If the EU implements substantial tariffs, NIO will make the most reasonable business decision, which may include delaying or cancelling the launch of its new mid-range car and future entry-level models in Europe. The company will also consider cooperating with a local manufacturer to build a factory in Europe, but NIO first needs to increase its sales in Europe. Li Bin said, “In Europe, establishing production facilities will be a natural outcome. For us, the baseline is 100,000 units per year. We are very confident, even though we know that we still have a long way to go in Europe.”

A blogger on Chinese social media hinted that Mercedes-Benz has confirmed its participation in NIO‘s battery swap alliance. The blogger also mentioned that Li Bin had just returned from Germany, and “it wouldn’t have been a wasted trip. NIO‘s resources are unparalleled among all EV brands in China.”

However, some bloggers analyzed that while Mercedes-Benz’s electrification process is definitely unwavering, as a global leader in luxury brands, it certainly has its own electrification strategy and technology roadmap, and will not participate in other brands’ alliances.

On May 21, China FAW and NIO signed a strategic cooperation framework agreement. According to the agreement, China FAW and NIO will carry out comprehensive, multi-level strategic cooperation around battery technology standards, research and development of rechargeable and replaceable battery models, battery asset management and operations, construction and operation of charging and battery swapping service networks, and procurement and support for the battery industry.

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