Specs and Photos of NIO's New ES7 Electric SUV Revealed in a Regulatory Filing in China Ahead of its Launch
Electric vehicle startup NIO Inc., along with its domestic rival XPeng Inc., are both emerging as serious competitors to Tesla in China with their technology-packed vehicles.
NIO is planning to launch its latest model soon named the ES7, which is a fully-electric SUV that will compete with Tesla's Model Y in China and BMW's X5L SUV that's sold in China. The model is the previously rumored model codenamed "Gemini".
Although NIO has yet to reveal the full specs of its latest electric vehicle, the details were recently leaked in a regulatory filing in China ahead of its pending launch, Chinese news outlet CnEVPost reported on Friday.
The details were revealed after China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) released the latest batch of vehicle models allowed to be sold in China in a catalog prepared for public comment. The NIO ES7 is included in the catalog, according to CnEVPost. The public has the opportunity to submit feedback between May 13-19.
The listing in the catalog for the NIO ES7 details the vehicle's exterior, wheels, calipers, and logo designs.
The appearance in the catalog closely matches previously leaked spy photos of the forthcoming electric SUV. However, the pictures show the addition of a rooftop LiDAR module that's similar to the units installed on the NIO ET7 and ET5 sedans, which are already on sale.
The length, width and height of the NIO ES7 measure 4,912 mm, 1,987 mm and 1,720 mm respectively, with a wheelbase of 2,960 mm, according to the data.
NIO's similar-sized ES6 SUV has a length, width and height of 4,850 mm, 1,965 mm, 1,758 mm and a wheelbase of 2,900 mm.
The details about the ES7 also show four separate vehicle weights of 2,400 kg, 2,381 kg, 2,380 kg and 2,361 kg, meaning the the electric SUV will be offered four versions, including rear wheel and all-wheel drive, as well as a single and dual-motor powertrain setup.
The motors are supplied by NIO's subsidiary XPT (Nanjing) E-Powertrain Technology and are sized at 180 kW and 300 kW respectively.
Other powertrain details of the ES7 were not listed in the catalog released by China's MIIT.
Back in February, NIO co-founder and president Qin Lihong said the company would release the ES7, its first SUV on the automaker's new NT 2.0 platform, in April, with deliveries scheduled to begin by the end of the year.
However, the recent covid outbreaks and new lockdown in several regions of China led to the postponement of the Beijing auto show,where the ES7 was set to be unvelied.
On March 30, Qin said the ES7 would therefore be unveiled at the end of May, according to CnEVPost. But with Shanghai under a phased lockdown since March 28, its unclear if the ES7 will be unveiled at the end of this month as planned.
The various wheel options, brake calipers and logos for the NIO ES7. (Photo: CnEVPost)
NIO's electric vehicles are uniquely designed, as the batteries can easily be removed in a highly automated process of one of the company's hundreds of battery swapping stations in China. The ET7 will also feature a swappable battery pack.
Last month, the Financial Times reported that NIO was in talks to license its electric vehicle battery swapping technology to rival automakers.
According to the Financial Times, NIO is currently in talks with both Chinese and international auto groups to open up its network of battery swap stations. NIO wants to sell the technology and infrastructure to other automakers in order to expand its use outside of China.
The battery swap stations are called "NIO Power". The entire swap process takes about 10 minutes. It offers a faster alternative of plugging in and waiting for the battery to charge, but also helps address the lack of convenient EV charging infrastructure.
NIO also offers a first-of its kind battery subscription plan for its electric vehicles. The automaker launched its "Battery-as-a-Service" (BaaS) monthly subscription plan in August 2020. It allows owners to pay a monthly fee for the battery that's separate from the vehicle's purchase price. The BaaS plan is designed to lower the upfront purchase price of the vehicle, so its more affordable.
The subscription service helps to offset the cost of the battery pack, which is the most expensive component of any electric vehicle and adds thousands of dollars to the sticker price.
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