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NIO unveils impressive autonomous electric car with a massive battery pack

NIO today unveiled an impressive new electric car, the NIO ET7, with a massive battery pack and the potential to be fully autonomous.


NIO is a Chinese electric vehicle company that has been growing fast over the last few years.

Often called “the Tesla of China,” the electric vehicle company has had success selling some electric SUVs in the growing Chinese market.

We also reported on them for managing to have success where several other EV companies have failed — in making battery swaps work.

Eventually, the company plans to expand beyond China.

NIO ET7 Electric Sedan

At NIO Day 2020 in Chengdu today, NIO unveiled its next electric vehicle: the NIO ET7.

It’s an electric sedan with a very impressive powertrain.

The ET7 is equipped with a 480 kW dual-motor drivetrain, and it is powered by a battery pack that can go all the way up to 150 kWh.

NIO described the ET7’s electric powertrain:

“The ET7 has inherited NIO’s high-performance DNA with a 180 kW permanent magnet motor in the front and a 300 kW induction motor in the rear. Maximum power is rated at 480 kW with peak torque at 850 N·m. The ET7 accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 3.9 seconds, and has a braking distance from 100 km/h of 33.5 m. With a drag coefficient of 0.23 Cd and the application of the 2nd generation high efficiency electric drive platform with silicon carbide power module, the energy efficiency is further improved. With a 70 kWh battery pack, the ET7 has an NEDC range of over 500 km, or over 700 km with a 100 kWh battery. When coupled with the new 150 kWh battery, ET7 boasts an NEDC range over 1,000 km.”

That 1,000 km (621 miles) range figure is based on the NEDC cycle, which is known to rarely be representative of real-world driving.

However, with 150 kWh of energy capacity and an efficient-looking design, the ET7 will likely get over 500 miles of range on a single charge.

Powertrain aside, the ET7 is also impressive for the extensive autonomous driving hardware.

NIO says that the electric sedan comes equipped with 33 sensors and 4 Nvidia Orin chips:

“NIO has built up the NAD full stack autonomous driving capability including perception algorithms, localization, control strategy and platform software. NIO Aquila Super Sensing features 33 high-performance sensing units, including 11 8MP high-resolution cameras, 1 ultralong-range high-resolution LiDAR, 5 millimeter wave radars, 12 ultrasonic sensors, 2 high-precision positioning units, V2X and ADMS. Aquila can generate 8GB data per second. NIO Adam features 4 Nvidia Orin SoCs with a total computing power of 1,016 TOPS.”

The company was able to neatly integrate those many sensors without affecting the design too much:

The ET7 has a price starting of RMB 448,000 (~$69,000 USD) before EV incentives, and it will also be offered under NIO’s Battery-as-a-Service (BaaS) model, which comes with a cheaper price tag and a monthly cost for the battery pack.

Furthermore, NIO is taking a Tesla-like approach when it comes to the autonomous driving capabilities.

It will deliver safety features enabled by their autonomous driving technology as standard features, but it will charge for autonomous driving features, which are going to be offered as a subscription.

Deliveries are expected to start in Q1 2022.

NIO ET7 Exterior Pictures

NIO ET7 Interior Pictures

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