Nio (NIO), Xpeng (XPEV) and Li Auto (LI) will report May EV sales this week, as well as Chinese EV and battery giant BYD (BYDDF). Sales are expected to bounce back somewhat after a dismal April, in which sales slumped due to China’s zero-Covid lockdowns. Nio stock and other Chinese EV makers popped Tuesday.
China passenger-car sales in May are expected to drop 19% vs. last year, following a 35% plunge in April, according to the China Passenger Car Association. However, local reports are pointing to government subsidies to bolster car sales in China for the second half of the year.
For example, the report says Shanghai’s municipal government will reduce some passenger-car purchase taxes and increase the quota of license plates for passenger cars by 40,000 this year. People who buy pure EVs will also get a subsidy of 10,000 yuan ($1,503).
In Shenzhen, the high-tech hub in South China’s Guangdong Province, buyers of qualified new energy vehicles who register them in the city can get a subsidy of up to 10,000 yuan per vehicle.
The Chinese government will encourage affordable EV and hybrid sales in rural areas. Local media have reported that a rural subsidy is likely, though Tuesday’s official announcement didn’t mention any. A rural push would help BYD, which has several low- to moderate-priced EVs and hybrids, but not Nio, Xpeng and Li Auto.
Tesla (TSLA) China production and sales likely rebounded in May after the Shanghai plant was shut down from March 28 to April 18. But Tesla Shanghai output is still not back to full capacity. Investors will get Tesla China production and deliveries data in a week or two.
Tesla stock slipped a fraction to 758.26, snapping a three-day positive streak. Shares are far below key levels.
Nio EV Sales
Nio sold 5,074 vehicles in April, down nearly 50% from March and 29% below a year ago.
The company announced earlier that it will report Q1 results June 9. Earlier in May, Nio gave weak revenue and EV delivery guidance.
Xpeng EV Sales
On May 23, Xpeng gave lackluster revenue and EV delivery guidance after losses and revenue both swelled in the first quarter, amid supply disruptions.
Xpeng expects to deliver 31,000-34,000 EVs in Q2, a 78%-95% year-over-year jump but below Q1 deliveries of 34,561 EVs.
Xpeng delivered 9,002 EVs in April, down 42% vs. March. That means Xpeng sees May-June EV deliveries of roughly 22,000-25,000, closer to its pre-Covid levels as China’s lockdowns ease.
XPEV stock jumped 4.4% to 23.50 on Tuesday, still below the 50-day line. Shares have plunged 58% since hitting a high of 56.45 on Dec. 1, 2021, amid an overall decline among EV stocks.
Li Auto EV Sales
Li Auto delivered 4,167 Li One hybrid SUVs in April, down 62% vs. March’s 11,034 and 25% below a year earlier.
For the second quarter, Li expects to deliver 21,000-24,000 vehicles, representing an increase of 19.5% to 36.6% from the second quarter of 2021. That means it sees May-June sales of around 16,833-19,833.
LI stock popped 3.3% on Tuesday to 25.07, after reclaiming its 50-day line on Friday.
BYD EV Sales
Warren Buffett-backed BYD will likely report May sales on Friday. Last month BYD launched preorders for the Seal EV, a Tesla Model 3 competitor. The Seal will begin deliveries in the next couple of months.
BYD reported record sales of 106,042 EVs and hybrids in April, up 313% vs. a year earlier. The auto giant’s in-house chip and battery operations shielded it from supply-chain issues.
BYD is ready to buy six lithium mines in Africa, according to local media. That would provide enough lithium to satisfy its battery needs for a decade. BYD already has some investments in lithium operations.
Follow Adelia Cellini Linecker on Twitter @IBD_Adelia.
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