China’s NIO Plans to Rival Tesla, Volkswagen in Norway

Chinese electric vehicle (EV) company NIO has had a successful year despite an ongoing semiconductor chip shortage slowing production, and now the Shanghai-based company has shared plans to expand into new territory.

NIO will rival Tesla and Volkswagen in Norway with the release of its ES8 SUV expected in September, and the ET7 luxury sedan coming next year, as reported by the South China Morning Post.

The Shanghai-based company’s ET7 sedan boasts a market-leading range of 1,000 km (620 miles) per charge, while the ES8 SUV offers 355 km (220.5 miles) of range per charge.

NIO CEO and Founder William Li Bin said the company hopes to have its cars in at least five European countries by next year, though he did not go on to name specific countries besides Norway.

On Thursday, Bin said, “It is no easy job for a Chinese company to go global for the time being.” Bin continued, “We do not expect to succeed overnight. We are making our plans meticulously and we have the patience [to chase high sales volume].”

In March, Norges Bank, Norway’s central bank, made massive investments into Tesla and other companies working on EV technology.

While Norway remains one of the most EV-friendly countries in the world, adopting EVs faster than any other, Tesla and Volkswagen currently lead the charge. NIO has been called one of two companies best poised to take on Tesla’s global market share, and Norway is a strategic expansion place to start for the China-based automaker.