Li Auto's range extender production base in Mianyang, Sichuan province, has a planned capacity of 200,000 units in the first phase, with 80,000 units expected in 2022.
(Image credit: Li Auto)
Li Auto appears to be the only one of the Chinese car-making trio to be affected by the power crunch in southwest China, as deliveries of its new SUV, the Li L9 extended-range electric vehicle (EREV), are about to begin.
Due to recent power constraints in Sichuan, Li Auto's range extender plant in the province's Mianyang city has experienced delays in supply, resulting in a push back on the start of deliveries of the Li L9, several local media outlets said today, citing an announcement.
These reports indicate that the announcement was posted on Li Auto's mobile app, although it could no longer be found when checked by CnEVPost.
For consumers for whom the Li Auto App shows an expected delivery date of August, the company expects to make deliveries from August 30-September 4, according to the announcement.
For consumers who will not receive delivery until September due to this delay, Li Auto will provide RMB 1,000 in gas compensation, according to the announcement.
Consumers whose Li Auto App shows an expected delivery date of September are not affected, and their vehicles will still be delivered in September, according to the announcement.
Although the announcement appears to have been removed from the Li Auto App, the company's customer service, in response to consumer questions, nevertheless gave the same answers as the announcement, according to Mydrivers.com.
Sichuan, which relies on hydropower for 80 percent of its electricity supply, has been experiencing power crunches due to ongoing heat and drought.
On August 14, Sichuan authorities issued an announcement that industrial producers included in a list would need to suspend production for six days starting August 15 to ensure electricity for residents.
On August 20, the local government issued a new emergency notice that extended the power restrictions while also extending the time until 24:00 on August 25.
On the evening of Thursday, August 25, Yicai reported that some local fertilizer producers said they were still unable to resume production on August 26, as the second round of power restrictions in Sichuan was set to expire.
"Because the hot weather is still going on, the heat is expected to ease next week and production can resume," the report quoted a source at a local fertilizer producer as saying.
The heat in Sichuan has started to ease over the past two days. The local weather station issued a rainstorm warning on August 27.
Li Auto officially launched the Li L9, the company's second model after the Li ONE EREV, on June 21.
Li Auto founder, chairman and CEO Li Xiang said on Weibo on June 4 that the model will be officially delivered to customers in August and deliveries could exceed 10,000 in September.
On June 24, Li Auto said the Li L9 had received more than 30,000 orders within 72 hours of the vehicle being available for pre-order.
On August 1, the company said the Li L9 had accumulated more than 50,000 orders since its June 21 launch, with more than 30,000 confirmed non-refundable orders.
On August 18, Li Auto announced that the first production vehicles of the Li L9 rolled off the production line at the company's manufacturing facility in Changzhou, eastern Jiangsu province, and deliveries will begin soon.
Notably, unlike the Li ONE, which uses Dongan Auto Engine Co Ltd in Harbin, Heilongjiang province in the northeast to supply the range extender, the part for Li L9 is manufactured by a Li Auto joint venture in Mianyang, Sichuan.
Li Auto signed an investment agreement with Xinchen China Power Holdings Ltd on August 27, 2021, to establish a new joint venture to produce the next-generation range extender.
The joint venture is called Sichuan Li Auto Xinchen Technology Co Ltd and its products will first be used in the Li L9.
On April 15 of this year, Xinchen saw the first range extender for the L9 roll off the production line.
The first phase of Li Auto's range extender production site in Mianyang is planned to have a capacity of 200,000 units, with 80,000 units expected in 2022, according to a report in the local Mianyang Daily at the time.
Li Auto appears to be the only one of the Chinese car-making trio -- NIO, XPeng Motors and Li Auto -- to be affected by the progress of power supply in Sichuan.
In a conference call after announcing its second-quarter earnings on August 23, XPeng said the company had spoken with some supply chain companies ahead of time and that the local power crunch in Sichuan appeared to have little impact on XPeng at this point.
NIO has not mentioned the impact of the power crunch on its parts supply, except that local media reported earlier this month that it was not allowed to turn on air conditioning at an NIO House in Chengdu, Sichuan, because of power supply restrictions.
The battery swap station at a service center on Chengdu's Airport Road and charging piles were blacked out, and the charging of some vehicles under repair may be affected.