Li Auto’s chief executive Li Xiang launched a series of business startup courses on Chinese audio content platform Dedao on Monday. With this move, the entrepreneur is aiming to tap a wider customer base and showcase his firm’s thought leadership, local media reported. 

Why it matters: During a livestream, Li mentioned that the target audience for his newly-launched online product development program significantly overlaps with Li Auto’s intended user base. He expects the marketing initiative to help the automaker further expand its influence in the electric vehicle market, media outlet Jiemian reported. 

Details: The program consists of 16 audio-based online courses, each lasting approximately 12 minutes, and aims to educate the audience about the fundamentals of product management, including the methodology for designing successful products, crafting powerful pricing strategies, and increasing operational efficiency and profitability.

  • The program also offers insights into what makes a startup more competitive, including tips for building a collaborative and unified team, based on Li’s extensive startup business experience of over 20 years in the Chinese tech and auto industries. As of the time of writing, more than 15,000 users have subscribed to the paid program, priced at RMB 99 ($14), according to Dedao. 
  • In one of the lessons observed by TechNode, Li recalled the initial challenges Li Auto faced while positioning itself as a manufacturer of EVs for Chinese families with children and grandparents, a potentially lucrative segment that was neglected by competitors, some of whom had voiced concerns that the customer base might be too small, Li said. 
  • On the online education platform, some influential users have voiced their support for Li Auto and its founder. Li Auto’s success story is “worth learning and researching” (our translation), posted a user whose account was labeled as a manager at SAIC-Volkswagen, a Chinese joint venture of the German automaker.
  • Li Auto entered a segment with high growth prospects and offered products at competitive prices for families, said another Dedao user, who labeled himself as a brand manager at Great Wall Motor. Li Xiang is already an outspoken and prolific user on China’s Twitter-like microblogging platform Weibo, with 2.2 million followers.

Context: Li Auto delivered 139,117 units of plug-in hybrid crossovers in the first half of 2023, surpassing last year’s total of 133,246 units. 

  • The Beijing-based EV maker expects to deliver more than 100,000 units in the third quarter and anticipates posting monthly deliveries of 40,000 units during the last three months of this year, CEO Li told investors on Aug. 8.

Jill Shen is Shanghai-based technology reporter. She covers Chinese mobility, autonomous vehicles, and electric cars. Connect with her via e-mail: or Twitter: @yushan_shen