Update: The headline has been fine-tuned to be more accurate; content from Beijing News has been added.
Qin Lihong said in an interview that NIO's order count has exceeded 10,000 for several months in a row.
(Image credit: CnEVPost)
After a short explanation of the dip in October deliveries on the NIO App yesterday, NIO co-founder and president Qin Lihong gave more details in an interview.
NIO's factory in Hefei ran at full capacity for only 10 days in October, so deliveries were low, but sales in October were excellent and reached a record high, local auto media Chedongxi said, citing an interview with Qin today.
Qin said he could not disclose the number of new orders, but said "it's definitely over 10,000, and we've been over 10,000 for several months in a row."
Chedongxi reports that their visits to NIO stores also confirm Qin's claims. A salesperson at an NIO store in Beijing's Wukesong said the store sold more than 100 units in October, a good month for the year.
"Because loan rates are going to be raised in November, 1,400 cars were sold across Beijing on October 31 alone," the salesperson said.
NIO said in an announcement on its website yesterday that it delivered 3,667 vehicles in October, including 218 ES8s, 2,528 ES6s and 921 EC6s. That delivery volume fell 27 percent year on year and was 65.5 percent lower than in September.
The company attributed this to lower production volumes due to production line restructuring and upgrades and preparations for new product introductions between September 28 and October 15, as well as certain supply chain fluctuations, but did not provide more details.
In the latest interview, Qin said NIO began a revamp of the JAC NIO manufacturing site in April and May this year to allow the ET7 to be produced and delivered in the first quarter of next year and to expand the plant's capacity.
The renovation was carried out in several phases so as not to affect the production of NIO's existing models, with the latest upgrade, which began at the end of September, being a very important phase, Qin said.
One of the tasks was the expansion of the body welding line, with more than 100 new robots alone. "After the equipment goes in and is commissioned, there's another week of complementing the line and capacity creep," Qin said.
As some car companies continue to blame the chip shortage for the decline in deliveries, Qin was also asked by Chedongxi if the decline in NIO deliveries was related to that, and Qin answered in the negative.
NIO's factory was open for just 10 days, and that little production wasn't enough to be affected by the chip shortage, he said.
Separately, according to Beijing News, Qin said NIO's current production pace is normal and orders in the clog will soon be cleared.
Consumers who order NIO vehicles now can get deliveries in six weeks at most, Qin said, adding that NIO deliveries will get back on track in November and December.