Something interesting is happening in the electric vehicle investment world – Australian share traders are choosing Chinese EV maker Nio over Tesla, boosting it to number one in Australian trading.
Often referred to as a Tesla rival, Nio is a Chinese electric car maker that has two electric vehicles – the ES6 and ES8 premium SUVs – on sale in China, and another on the way.
But it has a different approach to Tesla, which is looking towards a future of autonomous robo-taxis. Nio is putting its chips down on battery swapping to stand out from the EV crowd, coupled with a marketing vision to “bring joy” to its drivers.
Business Insider reported a 13% jump in Nio stock values after the company revealed its deliveries grew four-fold in July compared to the year before.
The numbers were not huge, but are significant for the young company: it sold 2,600 five-seater ES6 premium SUVs, and more than 900 six- and seven-seater ES8 premium SUVs, in July.
Now, a surge in trading Nio stocks in Australia has seen the company surpass Tesla as number one pick as local investors sought to snap up shares in the wake of the company’s encouraging July sales figures.
According to online trading platform eToro, Nio stock trading increase sixfold in July, reports Business Insider.
“With a 505% increase in trading activity, many investors are looking towards Nio Inc. as an alternative to Tesla,” eToro analyst Josh Gilbert was quoted as saying
Gilbert suspects the huge surge in popularity lies behind investors who want a result like that of Tesla, shares for which are currently sitting at around $US1,500 ($A2,082).
“When Tesla was first listed on the US Stock Exchange back in 2010, its share price was just $19.20. Since then, we’ve seen over a 7000% increase,” said Gilbert.
Nio is a penny stock compared to Tesla, although perhaps not for long. It closed at $US13.84 ($A19.22) on Thursday, but has risen fourfold from its US3.72 ($A5.17) value on January 1 2020.
And there’s more to come – at least, according to Baillie Gifford, which is Tesla’s largest non-company stakeholder at 6.51% according to CNN Business, and which also has an 11.26% stake in Nio.
Baillie Gifford thinks that Nio could see steep returns if it turns to licensing IP as a source of revenue. But that could be 10 years away, it notes in this report.
Will Nio ever come to Australia? Well, it already has – in 2019, several ES8s were spotted testing in Mildura, Victoria.
As for local sales – don’t hold your breath. The Chinese EV maker has a good deal of ground to cover before exports begin.
Bridie Schmidt is lead reporter for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She has been writing about electric vehicles since 2018, and has a keen interest in the role that zero-emissions transport has to play in sustainability. She has participated in podcasts such as Download This Show with Marc Fennell and Shirtloads of Science with Karl Kruszelnicki and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum. Bridie also owns a Tesla Model 3 and has it available for hire on evee.com.au.