Wuling Hong Guang MINI EV had a strong first full sales month (update)

Wuling Hong Guang MINI EV had a strong first full sales month (update)
Wuling Hong Guang MINI EV

SGMW (SAIC-GM-Wuling) is a joint-venture between GM and SAIC that is producing a truly affordable electric car perfect for the city environment, the Wuling Hong Guang MINI EV.

July was the first full sales month for the electric city car Wuling Hong Guang MINI EV and it was impressive with 7.348 units delivered. Currently more than 15.000 units were already delivered.

Who would’ve known that good availability and decent price is important for a small electric car’s success?!

 

Depending on the version, in China this small electric car has a starting price between 28.800 and 38.800 yuan (3.540 and 4.769 euros).

The secret for the impressive production volume and price achieved by this small electric car has to be its cobalt-free LFP (LiFePO4) batteries. They are safe, durable and extremely affordable. Without rare raw materials, cobalt-free batteries can be produced at extremely high volumes and this truly affordable electric car won’t risk having its production constrained by battery supply…

 

Wuling Hong Guang MINI EV rear and front

 

Enough talk, let’s see the basic specs of this electric car.

 

  • Length: 2.920 mm
  • Wheelbase: 1.940 mm
  • Width: 1.493 mm
  • Height: 1.621 mm
  • Seats: 4 (2 adults and 2 kids)
  • Motor: 20 kW (peak) and 85 N.m of torque
  • Top speed: 100 km/h (62 mph)
  • Range: 120-170 km (NEDC)
  • Starting price: between 28.800 and 38.800 yuan (3.540 and 4.769 euros)

 

This electric car counts with four battery pack versions assembled by three different companies.

 

LZW7004EVPDBB

  • Supplier: Huating (Hefei)
  • Chemistry: LFP (LiFePO4)
  • Capacity: 9,3 kWh (93 V and 100 Ah)
  • Weight: 94 kg
  • Energy density: 99 Wh/kg
  • Vehicle curb weight: 665 kg
  • Vehicle gross weight: 980 kg
  • Range: 120 km (NEDC)

 

LZW7004EVPKAK

  • Supplier: Guoxuan
  • Chemistry: LFP (LiFePO4)
  • Capacity: 9,6 kWh (96 V and 100 Ah)
  • Weight: 88 kg
  • Energy density: 109 Wh/kg
  • Vehicle curb weight: 665 kg
  • Vehicle gross weight: 980 kg
  • Range: 120 km (NEDC)

 

LZW7004EVPHAM

  • Supplier: Suzhou Keyi
  • Chemistry: LFP (LiFePO4)
  • Capacity: 13,9 kWh (103 V and 135 Ah)
  • Weight: 118 kg
  • Energy density: 118 Wh/kg
  • Vehicle curb weight: 700 kg
  • Vehicle gross weight: 1.020 kg
  • Range: 170 km (NEDC)

 

LZW7004EVPDBA

  • Supplier: Huating (Hefei)
  • Chemistry: LFP (LiFePO4)
  • Capacity: 14,7 kWh (90 V and 163 Ah)
  • Weight: 134 kg
  • Energy density: 110 Wh/kg
  • Vehicle curb weight: 705 kg
  • Vehicle gross weight: 1.020 kg
  • Range: 170 km (NEDC)

 

I don’t have the specs of most cells used in these four different battery packs, but the 100 Ah cell made by Guoxuan seems to be the “low-cost type”, as we can see from the table below.

 

Guoxuan prismatic battery cells

 

Moving on… the Wuling Hong Guang MINI EV isn’t the only affordable electric car from the SGMW joint-venture, there’s also:

Baojun E100

Baojun E100

 

Baojun E100 specs

  • Length: 2.488 mm
  • Wheelbase: 1.600 mm
  • Width: 1.506 mm
  • Height: 1.670 mm
  • Weight: 849 kg
  • Seats: 2
  • Motor: 29 kW (peak) and 110 N.m of torque
  • Top speed: 100 km/h (62 mph)
  • Battery capacity: 28 kWh
  • Range: 305 km (NEDC)
  • Starting price: between 49.800 and 59.800 yuan (6.120 and 7.349 euros)

 

Baojun E200

Baojun E200

 

Baojun E200 specs

  • Length: 2.497 mm
  • Wheelbase: 1.600 mm
  • Width: 1.526 mm
  • Height: 1.616 mm
  • Weight: 860 kg
  • Seats: 2
  • Motor: 29 kW (peak) and 110 N.m of torque
  • Top speed: 100 km/h (62 mph)
  • Battery capacity: 28 kWh
  • Range: 305 km (NEDC)
  • Starting price: between 54.800 and 64.800 yuan (6.734 and 7.963 euros)

 

Baojun E300 and Baojun E300 Plus

Baojun E300 and Baojun E300 Plus

 

Baojun E300 specs

  • Length: 2.625 mm
  • Wheelbase: 1.750 mm
  • Width: 1.647 mm
  • Height: 1.588 mm
  • Weight: 920-940 kg
  • Seats: 2
  • Motor: 40 kW (peak) and 150 N.m of torque
  • Top speed: 100 km/h (62 mph)
  • Battery capacity: 31 kWh
  • Range: 305 km (NEDC)
  • Starting price: between 64.800 and 79.800 yuan (7.963 and 9.806 euros)

 

Baojun E300 Plus specs

  • Length: 2.894 mm
  • Wheelbase: 2.020 mm
  • Width: 1.655 mm
  • Height: 1.595 mm
  • Weight: 1.040-1.052 kg
  • Seats: 4 (2 adults and 2 kids)
  • Motor: 40 kW (peak) and 150 N.m of torque
  • Top speed: 100 km/h (62 mph)
  • Battery capacity: 31,9 kWh
  • Range: 305 km (NEDC)
  • Starting price: between 69.800 and 84.800 yuan (8.578 and 10.421 euros)

 

The Baojun E300 is well equipped with modern safety features rare in small and affordable cars, such as:

  • Adaptive Cruise Control
  • Lane Departure Warning & Assist System
  • Intelligent Safety Protection
  • Automatic Emergency Braking System
  • Auxiliary and Valet Parking System
  • Guided Vehicle Anti-theft Warning System

 

The 305 km range in NEDC represents around 229 km in WLTP, making this electric car acceptable for many European customers if sold here for a decent price.

Anyway, looking at the table below we conclude that none of these models are eligible for the full government nationwide subsidies in China. However, they do get a 8.000 yuan (982 euros) subsidy if sold in rural areas and in China every electric car benefits from a sales tax exemption until the end of 2022.

Electric car subsidy in China depends on range and battery pack energy density – 2019 vs 2020

 

Small affordable electric cars are perfect for commuting during weekdays in crowded cities, relegating bigger and heavier cars (electric or not) for the weekends with the family.

My guess is that the first electric car to hit the one million units sold in a year milestone will be a small affordable electric car with a cobalt-free battery.

If you’re wondering, the Hong Guang MINI EV already counts with more than 50.000 orders and the planned production for 2020 (with just six full sales months) is 200.000 units. In 2021 with a full year production I expect at least half million units to be sold…

Would you be interested in one if you could get it for the price of the Renault Twizy (10.000 euros)?

Thanks Leo B for the heads up.

 

 

More info:

https://media.gm.com/media/cn/en/baojun/news.detail.html/content/Pages/news/cn/en/2020/Jul/0724-Wuling.html

https://www.sgmw.com.cn/E50.html

https://www.sgmw.com.cn/cy_ev50/ev50pz.pdf

https://www.gov.cn/zhengce/zhengceku/2020-09/27/5547596/files/fd0bb3eeebec47c297e5d191d2e481d3.docx

http://autonews.gasgoo.com/m/70017440.html

https://ev-sales.blogspot.com/2020/08/china-july-2020.html

http://www.miit.gov.cn/datainfo/viewCar?carId=299856

http://www.miit.gov.cn/datainfo/viewCar?carId=300125

http://www.miit.gov.cn/datainfo/viewCar?carId=300090

http://www.miit.gov.cn/datainfo/viewCar?carId=300781

https://www.shanghai-electric.com/group_en/c/2019-08-12/556943.shtml

http://en.calb-tech.com/product/18.html

Pedro Lima

My interest in electric transportation is mostly political. I’m tired of coups and wars for oil. My expectation is that the adoption of electric transportation will be a factor for peace and democracy all over the world.
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Famlin
Famlin
3 months ago

Thank you Pedro Lima
So Mini EV is bigger than Baojun E300 + in size, but has a smaller battery for a shorter range. NEDC of 120 km = WLTP of 90 km which may be low speed EV for WLTP, but still a high speed EV for chinese standards, may be they should have installed bigger battery.

Based on the suppliers, we can confirm that it uses LiFeP04 battery. Only LFP can be that light.
Sales are dazzling, 1K+ in 1st month, 7K+ in 2nd month, 15K++ in 3rd month. I think MiniEV could give Tesla Model 3 a run for the money for chinese leadership.

Will they consider selling a much longer range model for 250 km NEDC / 180 km WLTP. Many would be willing to pay extra for that range. Most important is they should launch a 5 door model that can be a 4 seater. That what will be preferred by every family whether they have 1 or 2 children.

Leo B
Leo B
3 months ago

You have to take into account that this type of car is used extensively in car rental/car sharing fleets. Many manufacturers have subsidiaries or related companies that are fleet operators. Still, sales numbers are very impressive.

About the batteries, maybe I wasn’t clear in my comment in the other thread. The companies named are the pack suppliers. This is not the same as cell supplier. I know Guoxuan and that company makes its own cells. The other two I don’t know. They couldΒ just be pack assembly companies, that use for instance Guoxuan cells.

Pedro Lima
Pedro Lima
3 months ago
Reply to  Leo B

Thanks again Leo for the clarification.

I wonder who makes the 135 and 163 Ah cells.

Probably one of these companies.

https://twitter.com/DKurac/status/1297057263681540096

Leo B
Leo B
3 months ago
Reply to  Pedro Lima

For the 135 Ah cells, I found this on aliexpress:

https://aliexpress.com/i/4000779717781.html

But the company website blsbattery.com is a bit crappy, so I don’t know if it should be taken serious.

163 Ah cells, I don’t know.

Pedro Lima
Pedro Lima
3 months ago
Reply to  Leo B

Yes, I noticed that too.

BLS often uses CATL cells, I actually recommend them here:

https://pushevs.com/product/prismatic-lfp-battery-cells/

It could also be from BYD:
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Leo B
Leo B
3 months ago
Reply to  Pedro Lima

I’ve done some googling and both Huating (Hefei) and Suzhou Keyi seem to be pack makers, not cell makers. They develop and assemble battery packs and BMS systems.

For Huating, this seems to be their website:
http://sinoev.com/
There’s not much information there, but they list BAK, Lishen and Samsung among their partners. They have been supplying JAC for years.
An article about the company with some more details (in Chinese):
https://www.gg-lb.com/asdisp2-65b095fb-31152-.html

Suzhou Keyi is the production location of Beijing Keyi, which was a startup from Tsinghua university according to their own website. The English name is Key Power. Their website is actually nice looking and quite extensive, but the latest entry in the news section is from 2017.
http://www.key-power.com.cn/

Robert
Robert
3 months ago

That is what is missing in the European market. Very cheap EV with a very small battery. 30% of households in UK and other countries have more than one car. They could have one short range, affordable EV and ICE or long range EV as the other car. Many were laughing when Mini announced the battery capacity as it seemed small but they received more orders than anyone expected. Mini is a premium brand and could not go lower but Fiat and Renault should. Fiat 500 with 14 kWh LFP battery and low price would be perfect for Europe.

Pedro Lima
Pedro Lima
3 months ago
Reply to  Robert

I hope that in a year or two, at least some European automakers sell their electric cars with cobalt-free batteries (LFP, LFMP or LNMO) as standard. NCM and NCMA batteries should be a “premium” optional.

Pajda
Pajda
3 months ago

Hi Pedro,

sorry for off topic I found this as interesting article about actual CATL NCM-811 production problems https://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/tech/2020/08/693_295020.html

Pedro Lima
Pedro Lima
3 months ago
Reply to  Pajda

Hi Pajda.

I’ve mixed feelings about that topic and have been considering to write an article about it.

On one hand, it’s true that fires in EVs have been occurring quite often in China, just follow Moneyball on Twitter to see what I mean.

https://twitter.com/DKurac

On the other hand, Korean media have been bashing CATL for quite a long time. Every piece they write about CATL is negative. Almost looks like that they don’t like that CATL is threatening the Korean battery cell makers dominance.

However, building safe battery packs with energy-dense NCA or NCM battery cells isn’t easy and Chinese automakers prioritize energy density instead of safety, that’s why their battery packs are much more energy dense than what European automakers have to offer.

A battery pack made with NCA/NCM/NCMA battery cells requires a lot of sensors and metal separators (to serve as firewalls) to be somewhat “safe”.

Maybe this is another reason to go all in with CTP battery packs made with safe and reliable LFP cells. BYD with the Blade Battery is on the right track.

Pajda
Pajda
3 months ago
Reply to  Pedro Lima

Thx Pedro for your comments, actually I am not as much concern about cell safety issues, because no matter of cell/vehicle producers it is still in a scale of one fire per many thousands of cars produced. I found more interesting the CATL production effectivity. The yield of about 50% is not satisfactory by my opinion.

Pedro Lima
Pedro Lima
3 months ago
Reply to  Pajda

To me it seems typical bashing of CATL by Korean media while praising their domestic companies.

If I understand it correctly the anonymous source for CATL’s production yield estimation is someone working for a Korean competitor (“an official at one of the country’s leading battery manufacturers”).

Is like asking a legacy automaker what’s wrong with Tesla. Then stating it as a proven fact from a totally unbiased source…

In the past I read Korean media all the time to get relevant information on battery technology, but when Korean battery cell makers started to lose ground to CATL, Korean media became totally biased sources of information.

I think that Koreans didn’t like the fact that CATL recruited a lot of Korean battery experts from LG Chem. It all began in late 2017.

http://www.koreaherald.com/view.php?ud=20171119000204

I could be wrong but that’s how I currently see it.

Famlin
Famlin
3 months ago
Reply to  Pedro Lima

china, japan and korea, all are nationalist countries which dont allow any other country to sell in their market. so sad. here at least chinese are selling more BEVs and thats a cause for cheer while japanese sell very few BEVs and keep bluffing that there is no future in electric vehicles.

Pajda
Pajda
3 months ago
Reply to  Pedro Lima

Yes there is definitelly huge rivality between chinese and korean cell producers but still I think this is a problem, particularly for new technologies. So I have no problem to believe that CATL can really have yield only about 50 % for NCM-811 and LG Chem maybe 70 %. For older technologies the yield is probably significantly higher. Another think what leads me to this conclusion is that you can easily buy tons of B-grade cells made by CATL, which are sold by many noname companies with removed CATL marking (QR code). And this works also for LG Chem cells as well.

Pedro Lima
Pedro Lima
3 months ago
Reply to  Pajda

If that’s accurate it’s another reason to adopt CTP technology with good old proven LiFePO4 battery technology πŸ™‚

Pajda
Pajda
3 months ago
Reply to  Pedro Lima

Hmm… from what I heard about LFP chemistry, it should be cheaper due to the material costs but not thru the production proces which requires more advanced technologies and so the overall price difference is not much in favour against NCM or NCA. So I would be very careful with the evaluation of the new BYD or CATL LFP high energy density chemistry manufacturing proces. The yield form the begining of production can be even lower than actual NCM-811. And if there are tons od B-grade NCM cells, then market is overflooded with such LFPs.

Pedro, I really have no idea and just guessing πŸ™‚

Pedro Lima
Pedro Lima
3 months ago
Reply to  Pajda

We’re both guessing πŸ™‚

But if I’m right we’ll see BYD abandoning NCM chemistry and start introducing the new Blade Battery to all its electric cars very soon. BYD can do the switch to CTP cobalt-free batteries much faster since it produces both the cells and the cars.

Barry
Barry
3 months ago

Pedro, not sure if this is off-topic, and while your coverage of BEV cars is wonderful, do you plan to cover BEV trucks in more detail, too? What sort of battery cells and packs do the Volvo Class 8 trucks have? How about the Mercedes panel trucks? UPS electric delivery trucks in England? Thoughts about covering upcoming trucks like Rivian Amazon truck? Arrival truck? Others? What about EV busses and heavy equipment? I believe the non-personal transportation vehicles have the potential to push EV costs down faster than personal cars, drop cell prices, and clean our air as they get dirty diesels off the roads. Thank you very much!

Pedro Lima
Pedro Lima
3 months ago
Reply to  Barry

Hi Barry, I’ll try to cover that topic more in future articles.

carlos
carlos
3 months ago
Reply to  Barry
Tyler
Tyler
3 months ago

If you’re wondering, the Hong Guang MINI EV already counts with more than 50.000 orders and the planned production for 2020 (with just six full sales months) is 200.000 units. In 2021 with a full year production I expect at least half million units to be sold…

Very impressive I wonder if they can get to nearly 200,000 units sold. Also this car could be very useful in many developing nations.

Pedro Lima
Pedro Lima
3 months ago
Reply to  Tyler

Definitely.

In Europe maybe a better looking Singulato iC3 (based on the Toyota eQ) would even be more successful.
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https://www.singulato.com/about-ic3