GAC Aion sales dropped to 10,206 units in January, and its local counterpart, Leapmotor, also saw sales plunge more than 80 percent to 1,139 units.

GAC Aion's sales dropped more than many of its local peers in January, and the new energy vehicle (NEV) subsidiary of GAC began offering incentives, like did before its last price cut.

GAC Aion sold 10,206 vehicles in January, down 36.34 percent from 16,031 a year earlier and down 65.99 percent from 30,007 in December, according to figures it released on February 1.

This is GAC Aion's lowest sales point since February 2022, when the company sold 8,526 vehicles.

The performance was weaker than many of its local peers. Li Auto delivered 15,141 vehicles in January, down 28.69 percent from December. A total of 8,506 vehicles were delivered by Nio, down 46.22 percent month-on-month. Xpeng delivered 5,218 vehicles, down 53.79 percent by month.

While releasing the sales figure, GAC Aion announced the start of a delivery incentive for consumers at a discount of RMB 5,000 ($742) per vehicle.

The incentive is available on select models of the Aion Y series and Aion S Plus and is valid from February 1 to February 28.

GAC Aion is also offering a limited-time 0 percent interest offer on a 3-year loan, as well as a low down payment option.

In addition to GAC Aion's big drop in deliveries, Leapmotor, another local NEV maker, performed even worse.

Leapmotor delivered 1,139 units in January, down 85.91 percent from 8,085 units in the same month last year and down 86.59 percent from 8,493 units in December, according to data released by the company yesterday.

Leapmotor delivered 111,168 vehicles for the year 2022, with most months delivering around 10,000 units.

The company was founded in 2015 and currently sells the mini vehicle T03, the coupe S01, the flagship SUV C11 and the flagship sedan C01, all of which are purely electric vehicles.

As the cost of components, including batteries, has continued to rise over the past two years, Leapmotor is preparing to roll out extended-range versions of some of its models in an attempt to reduce costs.

Leapmotor announced yesterday that the C11 SUV with extended-range technology will be available for pre-order on February 9. The company said on December 20 that the delivery of the variant would begin in the first quarter.

The Leapmotor C11 went on sale September 29, 2021, and is currently available only in pure electric models, with three versions starting at RMB 179,800, 209,800 and 229,800 after subsidies, respectively.

On November 16, China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology announced the latest batch of models that will be allowed to be sold in China for public comment, and the Leapmotor C11 with extended-range technology was included.

In addition to the C11, Leapmotor will also launch a version of the C01 with extended-range technology in 2023, said Zhu Jiangming, Leapmotor's founder, chairman and CEO, after announcing the company's third-quarter results on November 14.

All models on Leapmotor's C platform and future new platforms will have both an all-electric version and a version with extended-range technology, the company previously said.

Leapmotor launched a purchase incentive program for the C01 sedan in January, offering consumers an RMB 30,000 discount on the purchase of the car with an RMB 5,000 deposit, including an RMB 10,000 cash discount, up to an RMB 10,000 loan subsidy, and an RMB 5,000 discount on options.

The offer is available to consumers who pay the deposit between January 17 and February 28 and complete delivery of the C01 by June 1.