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NextEV launches new brand "NIO" and world's fastest electric car

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【Summary】The Chinese electric car company NextEV recently launched its new brand NIO at Saatchi Gallery in London, and also debuted its Nio EP9 electric vehicle which is claimed to be the world’s fastest EV.

Original Claire    Nov 27, 2016 7:05 PM PT
NextEV launches new brand "NIO" and world's fastest electric car

The Chinese electric car company NextEV recently launched its new brand "NIO" at the Saatchi Gallery in London. It also debuted its Nio EP9 electric vehicle, which it claims to be the world's fastest EV.

NextEV was founded two years ago. "NIO" means "A New Day." This lexos is aimed at expressing NextEV's anticipation of a fresh start and a brighter future.

The Nio EP9 is able to accelerate from zero to 160 mph in 7.2 seconds. And most impressive of all, zero to 186 mph takes just 15.9 seconds. It boasts of 1,360 hp, and as such, the vehicle matches the performance of top hybrid supercars like the LaFerrari and McLaren P1.

"EP9 is the first stage of automotive production for NIO. It is a statement of our vision and technical and manufacturing capabilities. It is a best-in-class product that showcases what is possible with electric vehicles," NextEV Chairman William Li said through a press release in London.

To prove the firm's engineering qualifications, the EP9 has recently undergone testing at the Nürburgring. It set a record for the fastest time ever by an electric vehicle traveling around the Nordschleife circuit. That time was 7 min 5.12 seconds, and was set back in October 2016. Previously, the fastest EV around the 12.9 mile track was Toyota's TMG EV P002 race car, which set a time of 7:22.329 back in 2012. The Nio EP9 has since broken that record, bringing it down to just 7:05.120. The EP9 also broke the EV lap record at the Paul Ricard circuit in France.

Yet while armed with such proud achievements, the company isn't ready to rush into mass production. It plans to build six cars initially at a manufacturing cost of $1.2 million per unit. Pricing details are yet to be released. NextEV mentioned that the first six cars won't actually go on sale, but will rather be gifted to the six major investors behind NextEV. The financial backers are all big players in the Chinese tech industry. They include Pony Ma of Tencent, Lei Jun of Xiaomi and Richard Liu of JD.com.

Although the first round of production won't be aimed at the public, the company emphasized the sports car will be on market in China next year, and then gradually around the world. Eventually, NextEV aims to provide a line of cars to customers hailing from different economic levels.

NextEV now has over 2,000 employees around the world. It features five major R&D sectors in Munich, San Jose, London, Beijing and Shanghai. One of the company's co-founders was the late Dr. Martin Leach, former president of Ford of Europe and CEO of Maserati. With its manufacturing base in China, the company is currently in collaboration with Chinese automotive company JAC. There are plans to launch a range of electric vehicles with various internet-connected functions.


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