Chinese electric-car maker Nio has started shipping the first batch of its flagship ES8 SUVs from Shanghai to Norway, in a move to carve out territory in a country seen as the gateway to Europe.
Deliveries are expected to commence in September in Norway, Nio’s first overseas market, the company said in a statement on Thursday. In June, Nio gained Whole Vehicle Type Approval for the ES8, an official permit that allows the car to be sold across all EU countries.
The Shanghai-based company did not disclose how many ES8s are initially being shipped.
Nio has established a taskforce of 200 Norwegians to solicit opinions on how to make a car that caters to local tastes, according to the statement.
Earlier this month, U.S.-listed Nio obtained two certificates from TÜV Rheinland for its power swap stations and charging equipment, meaning it is qualified to provide power swapping and charging services in the EU.
Nio’s push into Norway comes as the company has maintained high sales growth for several quarters in China. In the second quarter, Nio delivered 21,896 units, more than double the number in the same period of last year.
However fellow electric-car maker Xpeng has stolen a march on Nio in expanding into Europe. In December, the Guangzhou-based startup began handing over the first 100 G3 electric SUVs to customers from 28 Norwegian cities and towns.
Contact reporter Ding Yi (firstname.lastname@example.org) and editor Heather Mowbray (email@example.com)