Preorders for the premium P7 sedan from Chinese electric vehicle (EV) maker Xpeng Motors have climbed to more than 15,000, the company said, a sedan which it launched to compete directly with Tesla for upscale auto buyers in the world’s biggest auto market.
Why it matters: Xpeng Motors has expanded product offerings targeting both entry-level buyers and higher-end niche customers in an effort to head off competition from Tesla amid a months-long slowdown in the EV market.
- The Alibaba-backed EV maker debuted its first model, the G3 SUV, with a 351 kilometer (218 mile) range at a starting price of RMB 155,800 ($22,100) at the Consumer Electronics Show in January last year.
- The company has sold 12,466 units since it began delivering late last year. G3 monthly sales peaked at 2,709 units in May, a month before Beijing slashed purchase subsidies, a figure which fell to 1,015 units in October, according to data from China Banking and Insurance Regulation Commission.
Details: The price range of its second mass-market offering, the P7 sports sedan, is between RMB 270,000 and RMB 370,000 ($38,400 – $52,600) for a maximum range of 650 kilometers (403 miles), the company announced at this year’s Guangzhou Auto Show on Friday.
- The four-door sedan features a technology stack including Nvidia’s most advanced autonomous vehicle chip, the Drive Xavier, and Qualcomm’s top-line processor, the Snapdragon 820A, powering its Level 3 (L3) autonomy. The Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) defines L3 as “conditional automation” in which the car does most of the driving but a person must be on-hand to intervene.
- The Guangzhou-based automaker said that its advanced driver assistance system Xpilot 3.0 is adapted specifically for congested Chinese cities with features such as automated cruise control and lane selection for highways, enabled by 12 ultrasonic sensors, five high-precision millimeter-wave radars, and 13 cameras.
- The company said it has received 15,431 P7 preorders since its debut in April this year. Preorders require a fully refundable minimum deposit of RMB 99.
- Xpeng expects to begin P7 deliveries in the second quarter of next year.
Context: The P7 announcement follows days after Xpeng Motors secured a $400 million Series C from investors including smartphone maker Xiaomi, which valued the company at $4 billion, more than double the size of rival EV maker Nio.
- Tesla last month began selling its made-in-China Model 3 with an autopilot function starting from RMB 355,800 ($50,310), with an expected delivery date in the first quarter of next year.
Xpeng brings in Xiaomi as strategic investor in $400 million Series C