Disgruntled ES7 owners have asked to offer additional benefits as compensation, but have been denied.

(Image credit: CnEVPost)

The new ES6 will be a strategically important model for Nio (NYSE: NIO), and it has sparked complaints from ES7 owners ahead of its official launch.

Many ES7 owners recently formed WeChat groups in order to collectively protest to Nio that the automaker has betrayed them because the new ES6 will not only have lower prices, but also have competitive edges with their vehicles.

As background, the Nio ES7 was launched on June 15, 2022, and is the company's second model based on the NT 2.0 platform, and the first SUV on the second-generation platform.

The Nio ES7 is currently offered in two versions, priced at RMB 468,000 ($67,710) and 548,000 including the battery. If consumers choose to purchase using the battery rental service BaaS, the starting price is RMB 398,000.

Nio began deliveries of the ES7 on August 28, 2022, with a cumulative total of 15,123 units delivered by the end of January this year, according to data monitored by CnEVPost. Delivery figures for the model in February and March are not available.

The Nio ES7 is similar to the new Nio ES8 in appearance and key specifications, but is smaller in size and less expensive. Previously, the model that sits behind the flagship ES8 in Nio's product array was the ES6.

It is worth noting that the ES7 is not the NT 2.0 version of the old ES6. The old ES6, based on the NT 1.0 platform, was still on sale after the ES7 was released.

On April 18, Nio officially launched the 2023 ET7 sedan on the first day of the Shanghai auto show and unveiled the ES6.

(Image credit: CnEVPost)

Pre-orders for the new ES6 are already being taken, but the official launch will be in late May. William Li, founder, chairman and CEO of Nio, said the model will move quickly from official launch to delivery.

Although Nio has not yet announced the prices of the new ES6, the model is widely seen as starting at less than RMB 400,000, considering that the old ES6 previously had a starting price of RMB 386,000 including the battery.

The unveiling of the new ES6 has unexpectedly sparked discontent among many ES7 owners, who believe the upcoming SUV has a strong appeal but significantly lower prices, despite the ES7's stronger features and space.

These owners also believe that the ES7 uses many NT 1.0 platform components, while the new ES6, by contrast, uses all NT 2.0 platform components.

To calm the discontent of these ES7 owners, Nio held a communication meeting with them on April 27, with Li's personal participation.

However, a recording circulating on the Internet shows that the communication was inconclusive, and Li denied the owners' request for additional benefits, despite a lot of pressure from them.

Notably, on Weibo, a large number of users expressed support for Li, arguing that the owners' demands were unreasonable and that Nio should stick to its current stance.

($1 = RMB 6.9121)

NIO launches new ET7, unveils new ES6 at Shanghai auto show