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NIO ET5 Will Be the First Car Made at NeoPark, the Carmaker’s First Factory

For a company that already sold 200,000 vehicles, it may seem that NIO always had a factory. To the surprise of many, that is not the case: JAC manufactures vehicles for NIO. NeoPark will be NIO’s first factory, and the first car to be made there will be the ET5. The company disclosed that it has gone through its first TT (tooling trial).
NIO ET5 finishing its first TT (tooling trial) at NeoPark 10 photos
NIO ET5 finishing its first TT (tooling trial) at NeoParkNIO ET5 finishing its first TT (tooling trial) at NeoParkNIO ET5 finishing its first TT (tooling trial) at NeoParkNeoPark, NIO's first factory – JAC currently manufactures its carsNeoPark, NIO's first factory – JAC currently manufactures its carsNeoPark, NIO's first factory – JAC currently manufactures its carsNeoPark, NIO's first factory – JAC currently manufactures its carsNeoPark, NIO's first factory – JAC currently manufactures its carsNeoPark, NIO's first factory – JAC currently manufactures its cars
What that means is that NIO just tested all the machines that will make the ET5 by producing one unit of the EV with them. It is the vehicle we can see in these pictures. Coincidentally or not, the ET5 rolled off the assembly line on April 29, the first anniversary of the construction kickoff for the new plant.

More than the ET5, NeoPark deserves a lot of attention. It will not only be NIO’s first own factory: it will be a massive one. With 16,950 acres (68,594,183.46 square meters), it is 12 times the size of Tesla’s plant in Fremont. The plan is to produce 1 million EVs per year there, as well as 100 GWh in battery packs.

NIO will invest RMB 50 billion ($7,566 billion at the current exchange rate) there only in the first phase to have not only its manufacturing operations but also R&D (research and development) and a living space. NIO plans to achieve big economies of scale with the factory, putting many of its suppliers in the same area and significantly reducing transportation costs. This strategy will also help it reduce carbon emissions.

The company intends to start production in NeoPark by the third quarter of the year. That means we may be only two months away from getting the ET5 in the Chinese market and also in European markets. When sales start, it will be the most affordable car with a swappable battery, until NIO puts its affordable brand in operations. Rumor has it that it will do so in a partnership with BYD.

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