Chinese EV automaker XPeng Motors announced it has suspended all P5 reservations and pre-orders in the four countries in Europe it currently has a presence. The decision comes just months after the company opened reservations for the P5 overseas. Citing foreseen export timeline issues, XPeng will shift its focus to the P7 sedan.
XPeng Motors ($XPEV) made an initial splash in China last summer when it shared initial pricing for its all-electric P5 sedan – the third EV in its lineup. By initially undercutting the popular Tesla Model 3 by nearly $14,000, it was clear XPeng had come to compete.
When the P5 officially launched in China last September, its pricing remained highly competitive alongside news XPeng would begin selling it in certain markets in Europe. This past March, XPeng began taking P5 reservations overseas, allowing customers to configure their P5 and reserve it with a deposit.
This year, the company has opened “Experience Stores” in Sweden, Denmark, and the Netherlands to educate local consumers and gauge interest pertaining to the P7 and P5 before determining which EV to bring to each respective European market first.
Those plans have now changed due to supply chain issues affecting much of the automotive industry. Instead, XPeng will shift its focus to the P7 in Europe as the timeline for the P5 remains unclear.
XPeng P5’s entry into Europe on hold for foreseeable future
In an act of transparency and a continued open dialogue with the press and its customers, a spokesperson XPeng shared the news with Electrek. Here’s an official statement:
As we are all aware, the global supply chain issues have been impacting the automotive industry for many months. Many auto brands had to adjust their production and delivery timeline – as well as pricing – in order to mitigate these challenges and uncertainty. We expect some of these challenges will persist. Our latest assessment is that the previously indicated delivery time for the P5 in Europe may no longer be achievable, as a result of some of these challenges.
In order to minimize any impact on our customers, we are therefore taking steps to suspend new reservations for the XPeng P5 (in Denmark, Norway, the Netherlands, and Sweden). We believe these steps are in the best interest of our customers, and will shield them from the uncertainty.
For those customers who have make reservation for the P5, we are currently actively communicating with them about the timeline uncertainty, and are making sure our customers hear from us in the first place. Customer experience is our top priority.
According to XPeng Motors, this setback regarding the P5 does not affect its long-term strategy in Europe or its intent to establish a local presence in the countries it currently operates in. Instead, the automaker is pivoting to encourage EU consumers to reserve a P7 sedan instead.
That model is currently for sale in Norway and available for test drives in Sweden, Denmark, and the Netherlands. According to XPeng, deliveries of the P7 to Europe are anticipated to begin in Q2 of 2023, if that gives you any sort of measurement of when we might eventually see the P5 follow.
XPeng’s next EV model to launch will be its G9 SUV, which is slotted to begin production in China in Q3 of this year. While the automaker has not confirmed any plans to bring the G9 to Europe, it’s not unreasonable to believe that it could arrive overseas before the P5.
In regard to the Chinese market, XPeng has said that production and deliveries of all its models, including the P5 remain on track. The issues surrounding the company’s second sedan apply specifically to export issues to Europe.
Those customers who previously held a reservation for a P5 in Europe will be given the option to switch to a P7 if they’re interested.
This is interesting news given that I was just in the Netherlands driving the P5 and visiting XPeng’s local Experience Store. Just a few weeks ago, we were discussing whether XPeng would bring the P5 or P7 to market first in countries like the Netherlands, Sweden, and Denmark.
I guess now we know, it’ll be the P7. I appreciate XPeng’s transparency here and their decision to get ahead of this sooner rather than later, especially before official orders of the P5 begin in Europe.
Due to these “export timeline issues,” the P7 will have to be the darling of the Chinese automaker overseas, which may be harder to sell due to its sportiness. The P5 is similarly sized, although it sits on a different platform (XPeng’s first “David” platform shared with the G3 and G3i). As a result, the P5 is a bit more “family friendly.”
It’s interesting that all is well in terms of production in China (according to XPeng), or at least as well as it can be due to COVID-19 lockdowns and supply chain constraints, yet the P5 is affected for the EU. I’d imagine the company is prioritizing those models for China, but have not gotten confirmation.
I pressed a spokesperson for XPeng to see if we would see the G9 in Europe before the P5 – while there was not a concrete confirmation, that possibility is still very open, so we will see.
Either way, the P7 should still do well overseas once XPeng can convert a lot of the software and ADAS features to suit EU roads and regulations, but not having the P5 deliver on time has to sting. I think that model is better suited for Europe in my opinion.
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Author: Scooter Doll