Nio Inc. founder and Chief Executive Officer William Li said the Chinese EV maker may face a challenging first half as a cut in government subsidies and the broader economic slowdown erode local demand in the world’s largest new-energy vehicle market, reports Bloomberg. Customers are likely to try place orders before the end of the year, when the national subsidies for electric vehicles are expected to be phased out, Li said at a briefing after the company’s launch of its latest models at a weekend event in Hefei, central China.
“It will also take time for both the supply chain and consumer confidence to recover from the pandemic,” Li said, adding that he expects a full recovery in May or June.
The Shanghai-based automaker’s production has been upended by the effects of COVID. China’s initial strict adherence to its COVID Zero policy handicapped production, logistics, and delivery, before the government’s reversal in policy led to a sharp increase in infections, forcing Nio to miss its annual delivery target of 150,000 units.