Evergrande NEV said it plans to resume production of the Hengchi 5 in May.
(A Hengchi 5 on display at the 2021 Shanghai auto show. Image credit: CnEVPost)
Evergrande New Energy Vehicle Group (Evergrande NEV), the electric vehicle (EV) unit of China's Evergrande Group, has put production of its first model on hold, after warning of the risk a month ago.
Evergrande NEV has already delivered more than 900 Hengchi 5 units to consumers, but will suspend production of the model at its Tianjin plant due to a lack of funding, according to a Hong Kong Stock Exchange announcement yesterday.
The group plans to resume production of the model in May, the announcement added.
Hengchi 5 is the first mass-produced model of Evergrande NEV's Hengchi Auto, and its deliveries started on October 29, 2022.
The model is currently available in only one version, with a starting price of RMB 179,000 ($25,930).
On December 2, Reuters reported that Evergrande NEV suspended mass production of the Hengchi 5 due to a lack of sufficient new orders.
On March 23, Evergrande NEV said in a Hong Kong Stock Exchange announcement that it had continued to push ahead with cost-saving initiatives to focus its financial resources on supporting mass production of Hengchi 5, with layoffs at its Swedish subsidiary National Electric Vehicle Sweden AB.
However, Evergrande NEV would be at risk of halting production in the event that additional liquidity is not available, the announcement said.
The group will plan to launch a number of flagship models if it can seek more than RMB 29 billion in future financing and hopes to get them into mass production, the announcement said.
Interestingly, the Hengchi 5 received an OTA upgrade on April 3, when the H-Pilot assisted driving system became available for the first time.
Trading of Evergrande NEV's shares in Hong Kong has been suspended from April 1, 2022, and the timing for restarting trading has not yet been determined.
($1 = RMB 6.9041)
Hengchi 5 gets assisted driving capability days after Evergrande NEV warns of production halt risk
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