On January 26, Nio reported they provided over 60,000 battery swaps in a single day for the first time. It includes over 20,000 battery swaps on highways, also a new record. The automaker currently operates over 1313 battery swap stations in China – Nio calls them Power Swap Stations (PSS) – so on average, each station conducts 45 swaps/day.
“Looking forward to the day we reach 100,000 daily swaps globally,” commented Hui Zhang, Nio’s Vice President. It is worth mentioning that during the New Lunar Year celebration, Nio offers free highway battery swaps to all its users between January 13 and February 5. Nio operates 348 PSS on highways.
William Li stated that the goal for 2023 is to have 1700 PSS in China. In Europe, Nio now operates 10 PSS and previously announced it plans to have 120 PSS by the end of 2023. Doing the math, Nio plans to build 400 new PSS in china and 110 PSS in Europe this year. Nio plans to have 4000 PSS in operation by 2025, including 1000 overseas.
The Shanghai-based EV startup operates two kinds of PSS, Generation 1 and Generation 2. The oldest Gen1 PSS could store 5 batteries, and swap took about 10 minutes; the Gen 2 improved that to 13 stored batteries and swap in about 5 minutes (312 swaps per day in theory, according to Nio – considering that swap station is opened 24 hours).
On December 24, Nio unveiled its new Generation 3 PSS on Nio Day. It can store 21 batteries and perform battery swaps in about 2.5 minutes, making 408 swaps daily in theory (if the facility is opened 24 hours), according to Nio. The Generation 3.0 PSS is equipped with two lidars which help the car to navigate itself for the swap. The Generation 3.0 PSS will go into operation in March 2023.
Nio follows its 25 countries by 2025 plan, meaning the Chinese EV maker wants to establish a presence in 25 countries until 2025. It entered the first EU countries in October through Germany, Netherlands, Sweden, and Denmark. The following targets are France, Switzerland, Italy, Hungary, Spain, Austria, and – the United Kingdom.
Nio is recently very active in the UK as they hired a Head of Brand Development with experiences from BMW and Rollc-Royce and announced they would start installing swap stations there in 2023.
Nio is not stopping in Europe. In November last year, William Li confirmed that Nio wants to expand to the US market before 2025, saying the next generation of Nio cars is coming to the US. Li didn’t clarify what he meant by “next generation,” some Chinese media speculate it might be a hint for the next generation platform NT 3.0.
However, Nio is not new in the US. They opened the first office in North America six years ago, on October 2016, and even appointed Padmasree Warrior as Nio U.S. CEO. While Padmasree is no longer with the Chinese company, Nio recently started a hiring spree in their Silicon Valley HQ and opened many new job positions related to US car safety compliance. Hiring is conducted by its San Jose office in Califonia. Moreover, Nio opened about 60 new posts, including Linux specialists, camera systems developers, vehicle motion SW engineers, and homologation and safety standards experts.
Let’s see how battery swapping will perform in Europe and if Nio will provide any data on it.