How do Chinese customers choose between NIO, Li Auto and Xpeng?-CnEVPost

On August 27, Xpeng went public on the New York Stock Exchange, and all three of China's leading electric car startups have since gone public.

A recent article by Tencent Auto explains how Chinese customers will choose among these three companies when shopping for a car.

Tegic test drove the Li ONE in September 2019, the day the NIO plummeted. He felt that the car had certain advantages and tolerable disadvantages, but the NIO crash became an uncontrollable factor.

A friend in the auto media told him that NIO is already in the best financial position among the new car makers in China. "In case Li Auto goes out of business, the lifetime warranty will be gone, but here again there is a gambling component in it, let's gamble."

He still has a "knot" for NIO, as several of his friends work there. The company has a number of friends who work there, and is a heavy user of the NIO app. "It's very clear that they know all the services they offer to solve the mileage problem, but these services scare me." Tegic says he couldn't stand being "God.

But when the Li ONE, which was just what he needed, crashed three times in a row, Tegic wrote two posts about it, not realizing he was considered a Li Auto critic.

While writing the second Li ONE cut post, the Li Auto app popped up and asked him if he would recommend the Li ONE to a friend.

"Yes, of course I'm willing. But don't make me even hold my head up in front of my friends." At that time, he hoped that this would be the last "My Li ONE bumped" post.

When someone asked him which one was better, he thought about it for a while and finally came to the conclusion that the Li ONE was "just right".

After an after-sales inspection, it was found that the car did have a faulty amplifier that caused the radar alarm to sound on and off, so Li Auto replaced the stereo for free and the problem was solved.

The Tegic has been a little frustrated lately, with a few glitches since the month it was delivered, but it hasn't really been a problem lately.

Mr Wu, contrary to Tegic, feels that as long as the hardware is hard enough, everything else is not a problem and "OTA can handle it". He never says anything bad about Li ONE, and rarely speaks on the app or other platforms.

His daughter, who works for an Internet company in Beijing, was the first to stand up and vote against the Li ONE when she heard that her father, who was about to retire, was going to use his entire savings to buy the Li ONE.

"After a year and a half of persuasion, the first three months always gave him negative messages and ignored me." In the end, Dali was not persuaded, and in May of this year, Mr Wu, who lives in Shenyang, came to the Beijing Wukesong store to put down a deposit and picked up the car in June.

After driving for more than two months, Mr. Wu said, "Even 700,000 RMB cars are not as good as this one. "My dad is a 'brainiac' and he does everything a 'brainiac' can do."

Every time Dali calls Mr Wu, she's in the car or polishing it. "When they picked up the car, they went straight from the train station to Wukesong in Beijing, and then, because they didn't get the freebie they were supposed to get, the old couple didn't pay the deposit and came straight to Huilongguan." Dali's mother found Mr Wu looking unhappy at 4:00 p.m. "The evening rush hour, the two of them didn't even eat dinner and ran to Wukesong to pay the deposit."

From paying the small deposit to picking up the car in 2019, Mr Wu brushes the news about Li Auto and Li Xiang almost every day; he didn't know Li Xiang before, only that he was the founder of Auto House, "His previous job had something to do with cars, so maybe he'd be more considerate of our feelings?" But he doesn't watch the news much now, "also worried about going out of business, but think about it, how many billions of big companies are yellow, what's my car.”

"This car is all the shadow of an internet company, the space is quite large, sometimes shouting Li Auto students a bit unable to react." Mr Wu explained in a thick Shenyang accent, "It's not even a problem."

Li ONE is Mr Wu's fifth car, he only buys domestic cars, the first four were all BYD, and originally looked at BYD's Tang hybrid again, then thought the pure electric range was a bit short, "80-100km, it might actually be shorter than that."

Mr Wu did not consider the pure electric, "always a little worried", by chance on the Internet found Li ONE, "advertised fuel-electric 800-1000km range, what the emergency, no worries."

Mr Wu is retiring in two years and is now working in store development, driving around every day looking for stores.

"It's almost 15 quick dollars a day, and I can run 600km on a full charge of gas, and I hope the pure electric mileage will be higher." During this year's New Year, Mr Wu told his relatives about his car, "Then people bought it more quickly than my father."

Wang Bin's anxiety about pure trams is not so strong, and has bought four electric cars before and after, "there was not much choice, only Tesla can be bought in China, long range."

Since NIO released the supercar model EP9 lap time, Wang Bin began to pay attention to the brand.

"Now there are two NIO ES8 in hand, one of them is ready to replace the EC6, before the single lock changed to BaaS (battery rental service), did not think that NIO is so much worse than Tesla, but the disadvantage can not be compared, workmanship is the problem.

"NIO quite 'burn money'." Wang Bin has met NIO several senior, "William Li Bin, Qin Lihong contact many times, NIO's system relies on the user, the leadership team and they (Li Xiang, He Xiaopeng) mentality is not the same, later three have user APP, but copy it (NIO). (the) bottom of the barrel, that's where the people are." Tegic says NIO is a little too "attentive" to users.

Tegic says NIO's service to users is a little too "attentive" and that Wang Bin has experienced "God-like" service, but feels that "over-servicing, over-approaching, is not a healthy way to get a good service. It's the state of affairs that causes a lot of problems".

After the BaaS service was released, two different voices started to emerge from the user community, some said that NIO was going to "cut the leek", but others, like Wang Bin, understood and accepted the service.

"NIO's ability to control the market has become stronger and stronger, and now the users have the means to control, you can say that there is this ability, before the user kidnapped." Wang Bin said long-term optimistic about BaaS, "how many switching stations are now lined up, jerking the wool is normal, and so later not free electricity, not lined up experience becomes better."

As the earliest users, Wang Bin has his own unique views on NIO, "Over time, the distance between business owners and users is relatively distant, NIO's services will shrink, but much better than other car companies."

Wang Bin rarely uses the NIO app now, "The months between ordering and picking up the car are more frequent, about three months. The early ES8 owners are not the same as the later ones, and the later ones are back in the market."

Wang Bin bought some when NIO shares were at their lowest, but sold them soon after.

"Capital can take a car company public, and capital makes a car company build good cars, but capital alone can't turn it into a great company. The user has nothing to do with capital, the user feels the inevitable result brought by the top, NIO's set of others is hard to copy."

Wang Bin looked at the EC6 show car during the Chengdu Auto Show this year, he felt that the early NIO products with enough materials, "but the money did not spend to the point. The early seats used Napa leather, but they were not comfortable. The sound cover was all aluminum to make a plastic texture. But the EC6 is different, with new materials, there's almost no skin on the whole car, but the texture didn't go down."

As a typical taster, Wang Bin also recently test drove the Xpeng P7, and he felt the P7 had a completely different feel than the G3, "Xpeng has finally stepped out of the Tesla circle and knows how and where it's going."

The day after the Xpeng P7 went on sale, Zheng Yang handed over a $2,000 intent deposit, participated in a group test drive of the Xpeng Intended Owners in the first week of May, and five days later handed over $18,000 for the big fix.

"I still waited for the P7, and decided to buy it after the test drive." Zheng Yang very much recognized the Tesla brand, "but the total price reduction, space on the P7 than it, in the end, persuaded."

After picking up the car in July, Zheng Yang often reads Xpeng owners' posts on various platforms, including the Xpeng app, but he rarely speaks on his own.

In August this year, two user portraits circulated in the circle of car enthusiasts, one is a group photo of swimsuit sunglasses resort-style NIO owners, the other is a group photo of six men's tea party, people discuss this is a typical Li Auto owners.

"We're generally very young, around 35 years old, and very geeky and picky in terms of product." Zheng Yang said the first batch of P7 cars had some minor problems, a camera bug between the rearview mirror and the glass, body B-pillar rattle, "Xpeng owners are very good at communicating with each other and the group discussion is very geeky."

"The company is also a leader in the field of automotive technology, with a strong focus on the automotive industry.

Zheng Yang notes that Xpeng is quick to respond to user feedback, "OTAs do a good job of giving feedback very quickly, and the software logic issues mentioned by the last user are quickly corrected."

Zheng Yang didn't worry about Xpeng going out of business, and the erXpeng IPO was good news for him. "There are now more than a dozen supercharging stations in Beijing, and there is almost no queue. Last week a number of consultancies asked P7 owners what they thought of the company and how their experience was."

A small problem with a user can be a deadly big problem for Li Bin, Li Xiang and He Xiaopeng. If the user is a rock, it's not a stumbling block or a stepping stone, but it's hard enough.

Someone left a message for Tegic, Li ONE is most fortunate to have an owner like you, and most unfortunate to have an owner like you.

Li Xiang said in an interview that 50 percent of new owners are recommended by older owners.NIO financials show a 69 percent recommendation rate from older customers.

"Please do the owners a favor and give [extended-range electric car] a simple and easy to understand [new name], you have a deeper experience." On April 27, Li Xiang made a post in the Li Auto app with two requests: reflect the real advantages of the extended-range electric car; easy for ordinary people to understand; and easy to remember.

Oil-driven trams, oil trams, new hybrids... there were more than 1,900 messages.

Three days later, on April 30, Li Xiang, who hadn't been out in public for a long time, announced a major change at a media briefing.

"From now on, the Li ONE is a plug-in hybrid vehicle. It's better for customers, for us, and for the media."

In a recent media interview, Li Auto co-founder Yannan Shen said that was later quickly changed. "Interpolation is the scientific name, and we felt that calling it range-extender would highlight our own characteristics."

Users call Li Xiang as Li factory manager, employees call him "product by Li", he is a "straight line" thinking in the face of users, media and employees.

Regarding the feedback from the media about the noise and vibration in the range-boosting mode, Li Xiang has published a long article on the public platform and in the Li Auto app, hoping that users and media will speak out about the defects.

"I hope we can be treated like this forever, and I truly appreciate your existence."

"A business manager should not have the mindset that whenever the media says something nasty and doesn't go along with their brand, it feels like all of you unruly people are harming me." In February this year, Li Xiang published another long article explaining in detail the NVH and optimization direction of the Li ONE range extender.

In the nick of time, Li Xiang's anxiety over the new energy subsidy policy adjustment has been poured over with another bucket of oil. From July 22nd, subsidies will be removed for rechargeable cars costing over 300,000 RMB, and the new regulations will not affect vehicles in swapping mode.

Li Xiang was quick to respond. "Li Auto's prospective consumers don't have to worry, we will bear the part of the subsidy drop ourselves, and the user's price at hand will remain the same." He believes that the 300,000 threshold of the new new energy subsidy policy is presumably designed to restrict Tesla, but it gives Tesla the reason and necessity to cut prices, and 200,000-400,000 priced domestic electric vehicles will be hit.

By July of this year, Li ONE had sold 12,182 units, but extended-range still seems to be Li Xiang's biggest anxiety, and he's asked about it every time he's asked, and he always tries to explain.

It's rare to hear Li Xiang attend an event offline, and 99% of his comments in the app are about products and users.

On the day of Li Auto's IPO, Li Xiang thanked his team, shareholders, partners and wife, and at the end, he didn't forget to advertise the User Day on August 29th.

At the first user day, Li Xiang stood on stage and asked three questions in a row, looking a little tipsy.

"All the car owners with Li ONE at home, let you switch to an electric car do you do it?" "You have both a fuel car and a Li One at home, can't you drive a fuel car?" , "Why can't it be range-extending electric?" William Li Bin.

William Li Bin is different; user gatherings, industry forums, major signing ceremonies, he seems to be everywhere.

From April 2017 to now, William Li Bin has posted nearly seventy updates in the NIO app, more than half of the user group photos, NIO every big news. Most of it is a mixture of gratitude and joy.

On April 22nd of last year, William Li Bin released a "Note on the 38's personal attack on NIO owners", in which he demanded an apology from the "38 American Performance Control", announced the resignation of the PR director, and dropped a harsh sentence: the world doesn't owe NIO an understanding, but it should be given. NIO owners deserve the respect they deserve.

William Li Bin threw down the golden words, instantly in the circle of friends screen, users praise comments, "teary-eyed, support NIO", a major crisis into a turnaround.

In 2018, William Li Bin released 35 status, there are to the user's children's birthday, there are granny boast their own ES8, but also in the ice and snow with a team to experience the charging facilities.

NIO sold 11,379 ES8s that year, and at the end of the year on NIO Day, NIO released its second production model, the ES6, with first deliveries starting on June 18, 2019.

The ES6's sales were critical, but just two months before delivery, the NIO ES8 suffered three spontaneous spontaneous combustion incidents, and the ignited customer sentiment had yet to be truly "extinguished".

Ten days later, William Li Bin issued a recall, titled "Let's worry about it".

The ES6 owner, who has yet to take delivery of his or her car, said, "I've had my doubts, but this recall has completely dispelled my worries and shown me NIO's attitude and sense of responsibility.

A long letter has become a unique way of communicating with new carmakers, surprisingly quick and straightforward, good and bad things are in the letter.

On the third day of the Xpeng G3 2020 model's launch, He Xiaopeng issued a long letter apologizing, "Sorry, dear Xpeng fans , for making everyone sad." The reason for this is that older owners can't understand the "older models are more expensive than newer models" approach.

He Xiaopeng's letter was an attempt at a dangerous edge. He Xiaopeng wrote the letter himself, but admitted that his solution did not satisfy all customers, and that the reason for the delay was that Xpeng's hardware iterated too quickly.

The Xpeng Automotive PR team tried to resolve the crisis in a number of ways, including this apology letter. Then the Tesla owner's stint started circulating on Twitter again, "Old owners are worse than dogs, new owners become old owners," which was rarely mentioned after the P7 was released.

The first thing you need to know is that you can't afford to buy a car that's not going to be the same as a car that's not going to be the same.

He Xiaopeng initially disagreed with the online option, but during the epidemic, the launch had to be moved online, and the "B-stop option" won out over the live options.

On April 28, He Xiaopeng re-posted a short drama with Zhu once on Weibo, in which the phrase "He Xiaopeng Financial Freedom" was included.

"If you say you don't mind it's a lie, I do mind it." This is a custom-made "out of the loop" tape for He Xiaopeng, which he worked on over and over again during filming, "The process of acting, I sometimes still can't get the laughs, and that's painful."

In fact, He Xiaopeng doesn't really want to attract a lot of attention, but he now has more than 800,000 followers. "Having more and more people pay attention forces you to not have that kind of random freedom, and they know a lot of the lines I don't like." He Xiaopeng says his team talked to him several times before they were willing to do it.

He Xiaopeng doesn't register in his app, speaks mostly on Twitter, interacts frequently with users and the media, occasionally with investors, and maintains a sense of distance at his own pace.

"It's not that bad, we're still good." William Li Bin is in a good frame of mind after being bludgeoned into being the "worst man in 2019".

At the end of last year at the Global Founder's Conference, he even gave himself this kind of chicken blood, "In the process of starting up, it is important to maintain a better attitude, because without a good attitude can not get through."

It seems to the outside world that at that time NIO hadn't really carried over, at least not without a result that confirmed the return of capital.

In September, after the stock touched its all-time low line of $1.90, "no one had a good word for NIO."

On December 27, NIO NIO Day was held in Shenzhen as Belienve in Better, and netizens said, "NIO is at Tencent's doorstep."

William Li Bin almost "lost his voice" during the rehearsal for the launch, but still managed to deliver a perfect user event, with most expecting Deng Ziqi's performance, but laughing at the NIO owners' chorus of "Self-cultivation for Electric Car Owners".

Everyone knows NIO must be looking for money, all the time.

William Li Bin revealed in an interview that opening up the RMB fundraising channel has been an ongoing effort from the IPO back in 2018, "It's a strategy we've set out to do."

On April 29, NIO's China headquarters project was signed, and on July 10 NIO received 10.4 billion yuan in comprehensive credit from six banks, during which Tencent increased its stake in NIO to 15.1 percent.

Things still haven't escaped William Li Bin's judgment, everything take the results, there are results, there are people to stand.2018 William Li Bin said one thing, "I never go to actively find investment evil people, a lot of investment amount people are coming to us." But he added, don't go saying things that you don't believe in yourself.

The epidemic didn't hit NIO, but instead brought NIO's deep pockets quickly to the forefront.William Li Bin released BaaS, launched his third product, EC6, and as expected gross profit turned positive in the second quarter. Later to see William Li Bin again, everyone said, "rich state is not the same, less wrinkles, spirit."

BaaS has attracted a lot of controversy, but William Li Bin is still busy "crossover". It took five years to convince the major authorities, with countless press conferences to the media "brainwashing", the night of the release William Li Bin held a special face-to-face meeting with car owners to answer users' questions.

In mid-August, NIO's stock price was approaching $20, with a market capitalization of over $20 billion, and cumulative sales will undoubtedly exceed 50,000 units.

And on the other side of the capital, William Li Bin is no longer alone. "Xpeng fans with Li Auto are coming to NIO", Li Auto and Xpeng will be launched in the US in July and August respectively.

Li Xiang and William Li Bin have been "in love" for many years, Li Xiang once invested in NIO, and on the day of the signing of the contract at NIO's headquarters in China, he congratulated William Li Bin, saying publicly that if hundreds of new car manufacturing companies can only make one or two new cars, they can only make one or two new cars. On the day of Li Auto's IPO, William Li Bin congratulated Li Auto on its success.

Li Bin likes to talk about "user mindset" and is known for being a stingy boss. In the worst time for new carmakers, he said that Li Auto's cash reserves would last 36 months at the worst time.

Compared to NIO, all of Li Auto's actions are very low-key, with or without money in "internal digestion".

The IPO ceremony was held in a low-key and simple delivery center in Shunyi, and Li Xiang revealed in his speech the difficulties he had in raising capital.

At the end of 2018, Li Auto only had $900 million in cash on its books when Matrix Partners China's Ying Zhang helped him pull in a few very good funds, and it took less than a month for the funds to arrive.

In fact, Li Xiang also had a hard time during William Li Bin's worst last year, when his immune system collapsed and he was "sick for three months" during the most difficult time to raise funds.

In 2019, Li Xiang saw more than a hundred institutions with no response, and finally, Zhang Ying suggested that he find rich buddies, met four people Wang Xing and Zhang Yiming agreed to enter the game.

Wang Xing's entry into the market has given the capital market some reassurance. Li Xiang is currently the largest shareholder, with 25.1 percent of the company's total capital, while Wang Xing and his associate Meituan hold 23.5 percent.

Li Auto currently has only one car, and the prospectus mentions the launch of a full-size SUV in 2022 that will continue the extended-range design with a next-generation EREV powertrain, while warning of the risks associated with extended-range electric vehicles.

"I drive this car every day and I really like it. It's an excellent project and I'm sure it will be a huge success next year." Wang Xing sent one of the most blunt confessions in the history of new build investors, believing the market is huge and Li Auto is worth investing in.

Li Xiang has been called the most Musk-like new build founder, with his own set of principles for product planning and spending money that are hard for outsiders to crack.

Scaling doesn't mean spending more money, it means spending money more efficiently." Li Xiang believes that all "snowballing" should be done on a daily basis. Li Xiang believes that all snowballing money must be spent, which is quality expansion. "It's worth spending money on making the brand better, it's worth spending money on more channels and customer service, it's worth spending money on product and technology development."

Equity entrepreneurs have a common trait of painting the pie bigger and talking full talk.He Xiaopeng said Xpeng aims to be the most knowledgeable smart car in China, backed by the Ali Department.

Xpeng in December 2017 to complete the A round of financing, January 29, 2018, Xpeng car in Hong Kong to open a conference, announced the launch of a total of 2.2 billion yuan B round of financing, and Alibaba Group, Foxconn and IDG Capital's joint leadership support. in February 2018 Foxconn's 300 million yuan investment, in August to complete the B + round of 4 billion yuan of financing, valuation of nearly The company's funding went well for Xpeng, but Tesla's lawsuit against Xpeng's engineers irritated He Xiaopeng.

The financing side of Xpeng went very well, but Tesla's lawsuit against Xpeng's engineers spurred He Xiaopeng on, and outsiders began to take a different view of Xpeng's ability to develop on its own.

"I'd heard Elon mention Xpeng cars several times before within Tesla a few weeks ago and expect the teams involved to pay attention, and if that's the way it was expressed, I'm quite puzzled, with a skeptical, civil lawsuit, by way of hitting the engineers?" He Xiaopeng says there will be no fear and no giving up, "We will continue to bring in more high-tech talent in more fields, and the global wave of competition for smart cars is ultimately about technology and products."

Tesla has been pestering, and Xpeng has been staying invested and delivering on its promises.

The prospectus shows R&D investment of $1.05 billion in 2018, $2.07 billion in 2019, and 44% of operating expenses in 2020.

Xpeng has repeatedly emphasized in the prospectus that its cutting-edge self-development capabilities are a differentiator and competitive advantage, and about 50 percent of Xpeng P7 customers currently order the XPLIOT 3.0 version to achieve the automated L3 level.

"Both in terms of sales and the current capital market, 2020 is the first year of smart cars, just like the smartphone era opened in 2010." He Xiaopeng has sent many similar predictions, "Xpeng P7 has made great progress, hurry up to open XPILOT 3.0," and users are pushing for a new one.

"If any company in China can go global, the core foundation is technology or innovation." He Xiaopeng feels that any company that chooses a different path is likely to succeed.

He Xiaopeng joined Ali on August 27, 2017, three years after Yu and Lei Jun rang the bell for the Xpeng Automotive IPO as investors.

"I'm happy to be with a group of loving brothers, tossing themselves to chase their dreams, expecting to still be together when I'm old, drinking tea and laughing about the bulls they once bragged about." On the second day of the IPO, He Xiaopeng posted photos of celebrating with an old friend.

Xpeng XPILOT3.0 will be unsheathed, will be the best weapon to hit back at Tesla.In August, William Li Bin secretly recruited the former Momenta R & D director Ren Shaoqing NIO, the rumor is that NIO will resume self-development of automatic driving. In the same month, Li Auto's first CTO was put in place, and the company's determination to develop on its own was self-evident.

On August 26, Dan Bin (Chairman of Shenzhen Oriental Harbor Investment Management Co., Ltd.) posted a microblog describing this conversation among a group of students at Takayama University.

"The three combined exceed Tesla, which is our goal for next year." Li Xiang tweeted this and @William Li Bin and He Xiaopeng.

William Li Bin replied: "Keep adding power! "He Xiaopeng replied: "William Li Bin, Li Xiang, together we will power up, make better products and go global."

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