NETA Auto, a Chinese electric vehicle maker that has recently witnessed rapid sales growth, issued an announcement on October 12, showing that the rights and interests of NETA S users have been fully upgraded, with some changes to functional configurations. Adding blue as a new color option, the NETA S will start delivery in November this year.
NETA Auto has completed R&D for adding physical buttons to adjust the main and passenger seats and opening the trunk, which will be equipped on vehicles to be delivered soon. For a small number of vehicles that have already been delivered but are not equipped with physical buttons, the EV maker will provide installation services free of charge.
In addition, NETA has completed the development and mass production preparation of the third-generation EC panoramic heat-insulating and color-changing canopy. The NETA S Yaoshi version, 715 lidar version, and 650 four-wheel drive large version will be upgraded for free with the new functions. The rest of the versions are open to upgrades for a price of 8,000 yuan ($1,114).
The NETA S was released in July this year, and is available in black, green, and silver. With a price range of 199,800 to 338,800 yuan ($27,828 – $47,187), reservations have been opened. Zhang Yong, firm co-founder and CEO, said confidently, “NETA S is the best sedan worth less than 1 million yuan.”
The NETA S is a battery-powered mid-size sedan, with a length, width and height of 4,980 mm, 1,980 mm and 1,450 mm respectively, and a wheelbase of 2,980 mm. In terms of range, the model provides two power types: range-extended electric and pure electric. The total extended range under CLTC testing conditions is 1,160 km, while the range of the pure electric version under the test is up to 715 km.
In addition, the model is equipped with a brand-new self-developed Shanhai platform, a Qualcomm 8155 chip, a 17.6-inch central control screen, a 12.3-inch co-pilot entertainment screen, AR-HUD technology and a full LCD dashboard.
NETA S series models all feature the intelligent assisted driving system, NETA Pilot 3.0, and users can choose the latest NETA Pilot 4.0. The laser radar version adopts two solid-state laser radars, five millimeter-wave radars, 12 ultrasonic sensors, and 13 cameras.
In September, NETA’s U and V series delivered 18,005 units, a year-on-year increase of 134%. From January to September, a total of 111,190 units were delivered, a year-on-year increase of 168%. Zhang Yong previously said, “Before 2025, the annual sales need to reach 500,000 vehicles. If it cannot be achieved, we may be eliminated.”
Behind the growing sales are increasingly heavier profit pressures. NETA Auto’s revenue in 2021 was 5.735 billion yuan, and a loss of 2.9 billion yuan. In 2020, it lost 1.32 billion yuan. At the same time, as of December 31, 2021, it had total debt of 8.3 billion yuan.
To solve the problem of profitability, there are only two ways – one is to increase the price of existing products and the other is to launch new products with higher profit margins. However, in the price range of around 50,000 to 100,000, consumers are extremely price-sensitive. Once the price/performance ratio drops, consumers are very likely to choose other brands.
NETA is not the only powerful player in the market with lower prices. Leapmotor’s T03, Geely’s Geometry E, and Great Wall Motor’s ORA are all strong competitors. BYD is about to launch a new model, the Seagull, priced in the range of 60,000 to 100,000, to grab further market share.