(Image credit: Xpeng)
Xpeng (NYSE: XPEV) will begin pre-sales of its first MPV (Multi-Purpose Vehicle) model on Friday, the first day of the Guangzhou auto show, in direct competition with Li Auto's (NASDAQ: LI) Li Mega MPV.
The X9 will be available for pre-sale on November 17, Xpeng said on Weibo today.
Guangzhou-based Xpeng didn't share more information, other than to say the model will have an excellent ride and storage space.
The Guangzhou auto show will begin on Friday, with a media day on November 17, professional visitor days from November 18 to November 19, and general public days from November 20 to November 26.
Li Auto said yesterday that its first battery electric vehicle (BEV) model, the Li Mega, will be officially unveiled and that it will begin accepting reservations on November 17.
Li Auto's move comes as a surprise as the company had planned to start accepting Li Mega's at a much later date, several auto bloggers said recently, adding that this could be in response to competition from the Xpeng X9.
Xpeng has recently ramped up the marketing of the X9 on its social media channels with more frequent updates sharing the key features of the X9.
Pricing information for both the Xpeng X9 and the Li Mega is currently unknown, although Li Auto has said several times that it is confident that its MPV is on track to become the best-selling model priced above RMB 500,000 ($68,600) in China.
On May 26, He Xiaopeng, Xpeng's chairman and CEO, said on Weibo that the company was building the X9 MPV, with which it hoped to open up the MPV market to a younger demographic.
On August 18, Mr. He said in an analyst call after Xpeng announced its second-quarter earnings that the seven-seat MPV model will be released at the end of the fourth quarter, and its contribution to this year's deliveries may be limited.
The Xpeng X9 entered a filing catalog with China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) on September 12, showcasing the model's length, width and height of 5,293 mm, 1,988 mm and 1,785 mm, respectively, with a wheelbase of 3,160 mm.
The Xpeng X9 will be offered in both single-motor and dual-motor versions, with battery suppliers including Eve Energy and CALB.
Li Auto said at the Chengdu auto show in late August that it will officially launch the Li Mega in December, with show cars available at Li Auto stores in January next year and deliveries starting in February.
It's not clear if Li Auto will move that timeline up due to competition from the Xpeng X9.
Earlier today, Li Auto said in a Weibo post that the Li Mega will be powered by the Qilin Battery supplied by CATL, which can get a range of 500 kilometers on a 12-minute charge.
The battery has a peak charge multiplier of 5C, a peak charge current of over 700 A and a maximum charge power of over 520 kW, Li Auto said.
The C refers to the charge multiplier, and 5C theoretically means the battery can be fully charged in one-fifth of an hour.
($1 = RMB 7.2885)