Leapmotor's deliveries fell to just 1,139 units in January, but with the March 1 launch of the C11 SUV's EREV variant, its monthly deliveries have moved back above 14,000 units over the past two months.

(Leapmotor C01 EREV. Image credit: Leapmotor)

Chinese electric vehicle (EV) startup Leapmotor today launched an extended-range electric vehicle (EREV) variant of its flagship sedan, the C01, after adopting a similar strategy with its flagship SUV, the C11, earlier this year.

Leapmotor is offering three versions of the C01 EREV with starting prices of RMB 145,800 ($19,980), RMB 158,800 and RMB 169,800 respectively.

The C01 EREV measures 5,050 mm in length, 1,902 mm in width and 1,515 mm in height, and has a wheelbase of 2,930 mm. By comparison, the C01's battery electric vehicle (BEV) version measures 5,050 mm in length, 1,902 mm in width and 1,509 mm in height, and has a wheelbase of 2,930 mm.

All three versions of the C01 EREV are powered by a rear-mounted single electric motor with peak power of 200 kW and peak torque of 360 Nm. They are all powered by a 1.5L engine.

With this powertrain, all three versions of the C01 EREV can accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in 8.2 seconds.

The C01 EREV is powered by large battery packs, with the least expensive version having a pack capacity of 30.1 kWh and providing a CLTC battery range of 216 kilometers. The other two versions both have a pack capacity of 43.7 kWh and are capable of delivering a CLTC battery range of 316 km.

For comparison, Leapmotor's lower-priced BEV, the T03, has a 41.3 kWh battery pack in its top-of-the-line version and offers a CLTC range of 403 kilometers, while the T03's entry-level version has a 21.6 kWh battery pack and a CLTC range of 200 kilometers.

(NASDAQ: LI), the most successful carmaker in China's EREV sector, has equipped its five-seat SUV, the Li L7, with a battery pack with a capacity of 42.8 kWh, although due to the model's size and weight, it has a CLTC battery range of 175 kilometers.

Offering larger battery packs for EREVs meets the needs of users in most scenarios, Leapmotor founder Zhu Jiangming said at today's launch.

"It's not that users don't need larger batteries, but they are worried about spending more money. For every extra 1 kWh capacity we provide, users can be less anxious," Zhu said.

The combined CLTC ranges of the three versions of the C01 EREV are 1,176 kilometers, 1,276 kilometers, and 1,276 kilometers, respectively, on a full tank of fuel and full charge.

The C01 EREV supports fast charging, but the peak power of 40-50 kW is a far cry from some of the best BEVs currently available. The model takes 30 minutes to charge from 30 percent to 80 percent.

Founded in 2015, Leapmotor's models on sale include the mini EV T03, coupe model S01, flagship SUV model C11, and flagship sedan C01.

The C01 sedan was officially launched on September 28, 2022, and was previously only available in BEV versions, with a starting price range of RMB 149,800 to RMB 208,800 yuan.

It saw a sharp drop in deliveries in the first quarter of the year and fell to just 1,139 units in January. But with the launch of the EREV variant of the C11 on March 1, its monthly deliveries have moved back above 14,000 units in the past two months.

After announcing the company's third-quarter results on November 14, 2022, Zhu said that all models on the company's C platform, as well as future new platforms, will have both BEV and EREV versions.

In contrast to BEVs, EREVs are able to use gas stations located throughout China. Such models are seen as completely free of mileage anxiety and offer the driving experience of BEVs.

Carmaker's sales are also reflecting this fact, with Li Auto, for example, already significantly outselling its two main peers, (NYSE: NIO) and (NYSE: XPEV).

In addition to launching the C01 EREV, Leapmotor today introduced three new variants of the C11 EREV, with starting prices of RMB 149,800, RMB 161,800, and RMB 175,800, respectively.

These three versions are powered by a more powerful 1.5L engine compared to the previously available model.

The C01 EREV was previously available in three versions starting at RMB 149,800, RMB 165,800 and RMB 185,800, all of which were powered by a 1.2T engine.

(Leapmotor's new C11 EREV with 1.5L engine. Image credit: Leapmotor)

($1 = RMB 7.2966)

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