China EV Sales: Nio Leads In August Amid New Models And Warren Buffett’s Move

China EV startup No (NIO) outpaced XPeng Motors (XPEV) and Auto (LI) in August electric vehicle deliveries, according to sales reports Thursday. While Nio’s August sales increased modestly compared to July, XPeng and Li Auto saw their deliveries decrease after issuing conservative guidance earlier in the month.


Meanwhile, EV and battery giant BYD (BYDDF) should report its August sales in a day or two. BYD stock is selling off this week as Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway (BRKB) disclosed it sold a sliver of its big holdings last week. BYD reported strong earnings earlier in the week.

Nio stock, Li Auto and XPeng are also struggling.

August is somewhat of a transition period for China EVs. Nio and Li Auto began deliveries of new models at the end of the month, with Nio and BYD set to begin deliveries of other new EVs in September. XPeng will launch a new vehicle later this year.

New Stock

NIO shares dropped 2% before the market opened Thursday. The stock edged up 0.4% to 19.91 on Wednesday, just below the 50-day line. The stock is in the midst of consolidation with an official 24.53 buy point, according to MarketSmith. However, in the current market environment extreme caution should be exercised.

Nio announced Thursday that it delivered 10,677 vehicles in August, an 82% increase year-over-year. August sales included 7,551 SUVs and 3,126 sedans. In total, 2022 vehicle sales have grown 28% to 71,556.

On Aug. 28, Nio launched deliveries of the ES7 SUV. Nio will begin deliveries of its ET5 sedan on Sept. 30, following the ET7 luxury sedan in March. Nio, which will also refresh its ES8 SUV soon, will have five EVs with the ET5. The EV startup said Thursday it delivered 398 ES7 SUVs in August.

Nio is stepping up its European presence, sending the ET7 to several countries.

The company announces second-quarter earnings on Sept. 7, before the market opens. Nio stock has a Composite Rating of 32. Its Relative Strength Rating is 33. It has an EPS Rating of 7.

The Auto Stock

LI stock fell 2% in Thursday’s premarket activity. Shares retreated 0.1% to 28.77 on Wednesday, again hitting resistance at the 200-day line. Shares have retreated sharply from the June 24 high of 41.49, especially since mid-July.

Li Auto said Thursday it delivered 4,571 vehicles for the month of August, down 56% vs. July and 52% vs. a year earlier

This follows disappointing guidance on Aug. 15, with Li Auto expecting to deliver 27,000-29,000 vehicles in Q3. That’s down from Q2 and despite already reporting 10,422 deliveries in July.

The Li One SUV hybrid, which has been Li Auto’s only vehicle, has seen demand suddenly plunge. The automaker is blaming cannibalization from its more-premium L9 hybrid SUV. Li began L9 deliveries on Aug. 30, with the automaker still expecting 10,000 L9 deliveries in September.

“We are pleased to have begun deliveries of our flagship smart SUV, Li L9, and to have heard from Li L9’s initial users that it exceeded their expectations,” Yanan Shen, Li Auto co-founder and president, said in a statement.

Shen added the company is preparing to launch the Li L8, a scaled-down L9, in early November, with delivery beginning in the same month.

The Auto stock has a 62 Composite Rating out of 99. It has a 76 Relative Strength Rating. The EPS rating is 26.

XPeng Stock

XPEV shares dropped more than 1% early Thursday morning. The stock rose 1.4% to 18.52 on Wednesday. XPeng stock has struggled in 2022, hitting a 22-month low on Tuesday, not far from its August 2020 IPO price.

XPeng reported Thursday vehicle deliveries grew 33% vs. a year earlier to 9,578 vehicles. That was down 17% vs. July.

XPeng delivered 5,745 P7s, its sports sedan model in August. It also delivered 2,678 P5 sedans along with 1,155 G3i and G3 compact SUVs.

The new flagship G9 SUV should begin deliveries in Q4, likely replacing the aging G3.

For Q3, XPeng expects vehicle deliveries of 29,000-31,000, a decline from Q2. With July deliveries in hand, XPeng expects August-September deliveries combined will be below 20,000.

XPEV stock has a weak 11 Composite Rating out of 99. It has a 9 Relative Strength Rating, also very weak. The EPS rating is 2.

BYD Stock

BYDDF stock fell 4.35% to 30.75 in Wednesday’s stock market trading, the lowest since mid-May. Shares of the EV and battery giant tumbled 7.8% on Tuesday, breaking below its 200-day moving average. Shares hit a record 43.61 on June 28.

The catalyst for BYD stock’s plunge? Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway said on Aug. 30 that it sold 1.33 million H-shares on Aug. 24 in Hong Kong, less than 1% of its big stake. Berkshire still owns slightly less than 8% of BYD, but there is concern that it will keep selling shares.

BYD stock had already plunged July 12 on rumors that Buffett would sell some or all of his long-term stake. Cathie Wood’s Ark Innovation ETF (ARKK) also owns a small stake in BYD, as well as Nio and XPeng stock.

On Monday, BYD announced it had tripled its net income in the second quarter, easily beating views. BYD had previously said it sold 355,021 new energy vehicles (NEVs) in Q2, ballooning 256% year-over-year and 24% vs. Q1. NEVs include fully electric vehicles, plug-in hybrids and fuel-cell vehicles.

Tesla (TSLA) reported Q2 deliveries at 254,695, a drop of nearly 18% from Q1. Elon Musk’s EV giant still leads BYD in sales of all-electric vehicles, but that gap is narrowing.

Tesla Stock Vs. BYD Stock

On Aug. 3, BYD reported record July sales of 162,350 electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids, up 222% vs. a year earlier. Through Aug. 28, BYD had sold more than 136,000 vehicles in China in August, according to data from the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers.

The automaker is rolling out several new EV-only and hybrid-only models in the coming months. The Seal sedan is BYD’s first clear cut competitor to Tesla’s Model 3. The vehicle has roughly equal dimensions and range to a Model 3 — and $10,000 cheaper.

Deliveries are expected to start in the next few days. BYD said Seal preorders had topped 60,000 since they opened on May 20.

BYD has several other models launching in the next few months. It’s also entering Australia, several other Asia-Pacific nations and Europe in the next few months. It will enter Japan in 2023.

BYD does not have a Composite Rating, the key IBD benchmark. But it has a 46 Relative Strength Rating, an exclusive IBD Stock Checkup measurement for share price movement with a top grade of 99. The EPS rating is 82.

Please follow Kit Norton on Twitter @KitNorton for more coverage.


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