Following from the recent announcement about a similar deal with Changan, Zhejiang Geely Holding Group has joined EV maker Nio to promote battery-swapping technology and services to address shortcomings in the country’s EV charging infrastructure.
Nio said in a statement that the two companies had “agreed to carry out comprehensive cooperation on battery standards, battery swapping technology, battery swapping network expansion and operation, swappable model development and battery asset management”.
Geely is the second automaker just this month to agree to collaborate with Shanghai-based Nio after Changan signed its similar agreement last week to establish common technology standards and develop a shared recharging network.
Recharging infrastructure availability is a significant concern for potential BEV buyers worldwide along with ‘range anxiety’. Battery swapping services are seen as a viable solution for plugging gaps in existing fixed chargepoint networks.
Nio had said in a statement last week “expanding recharging networks is core to the development of the smart electric vehicle industry. It is proven that battery swapping is a quick, efficient and sustainable recharging solution for smart electric vehicles”.
Bringing in Geely, China’s second largest privately-owned automaker after BYD, as a partner is a major step forward for Nio. The company is estimated to have a 6% share of China’s BEV market.
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William Li, Nio co-founder and CEO, said: “Nio and Geely [understand] battery swapping and have been dedicated to investment in battery swapping technology and [a] network for private cars and commercial vehicles.
“This strategic partnership will further popularise battery swapping, bring quality, convenient battery swapping experience to more users and contribute to steady development of the smart EV industry.”
Nio said the two companies would invest in a shared network based on a “co-operative” model and co-develop two battery swapping standards for private vehicles and commercial vehicles.
They also agreed to accelerate development of on-vehicle battery swapping technology and “expand the operational scale of battery swapping to provide more convenient, comprehensive and safe services for users with different needs”.
They also plan to establish an ‘efficient battery asset management mechanism’ and develop vehicles compatible with battery swapping.
Nio already has a significant swapping network in China with 3,000 Power Swap Stations expected to be in operation nationwide by the end of the year.
The network will be strengthened as a result of the new deals with Geely and Changan.