Chinese EV manufacturer Nio has recently launched a Battery as a Service (BaaS) scheme for customers in its domestic market. Under the program, its cars can be purchased without a battery, which the company says makes them more competitive than hybrid and IC-powered vehicles, while also giving customers the flexibility to change battery capacity depending on their needs and pay accordingly.
Nio says customers who choose to purchase a car with BaaS benefit from RMB70,000 (US$10,126) off the car price across all Nio models, and subscribe to a 70kWh battery pack for RMB980 (US$140) per month.
In addition, the company claims BaaS represents a systematic solution to some of the long-standing challenges limiting EV market penetration, including battery degradation, battery upgradeability and lower resale value.
The BaaS is based on Nio’s battery swapping technologies and Chinese network of 143 Power Swap stations (pictured below) and services. The company says it has already obtained more than 1,200 patents related to battery swapping and completed more than 800,000 swaps for users. Recently, China’s first national electric vehicle battery swapping standard, of which Nio took the initiative in drafting together with the China Automotive Technology and Research Center (CATARC) and other OEMs, was approved.