XPeng To Offer Cheaper Batteries. The EV Industry Continues to Mature.
Kanebridge News
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XPeng To Offer Cheaper Batteries. The EV Industry Continues to Mature.

Chinese EV maker XPeng is making a battery decision it hopes will give it a leg up on the competition.

By Al Root
Thu, Mar 4, 2021Grey Clock 2 min

Batteries and battery- management systems are to an electric vehicle what a high-quality internal combustion engine is to a gasoline-powered car, so battery decisions can make or break an EV maker. Chinese EV maker XPeng is making a battery decision it hopes will give it a leg up on the competition.

XPeng (ticker: XPEV) is going to start selling LFP-battery-powered electric vehicles soon. China’s Ministry of Industrial Information & Technology recently announced that XPeng was using LFP batteries in vehicles.

LFP is short for lithium-iron-phosphate. Iron is the “F” in that acronym because its elemental symbol is “Fe.” Lithium-iron-phosphate batteries are a little cheaper than top-of-the line lithium-ion batteries, which contain elements such as cobalt and nickel.

LFP batteries are more cost-effective, but with a trade-off. They don’t pack quite as much punch as their more expensive cousins, so the range of the cars that use them is affected.

XPeng, in this case, probably doesn’t mind because most drivers don’t need 482 kilometres, or even 320 kilometres, of daily range. The benefit of a lower purchase cost, for many car buyers, far exceeds the downside of a lower per-charge range. The company will continue to offer vehicles with top-of-the line lithium-ion batteries as well.

It’s an interesting decision for investors to ponder. Offering different batteries in an EV is a little like offering different engines in traditional automobiles. In traditional cars, however, engine options are usually tied to horsepower and speed. In the case of EVs, battery options are more about range.

Billions of dollars are being invested in the EV industry to come up with more powerful, longer-lasting batteries. QuantumScape (QS), for instance, is working on revolutionary solid-state battery technology. QuantumScape doesn’t have sales yet, but it is one of the most valuable automotive suppliers in the world. That’s how important batteries are to the EV industry.

QuantumScape’s batteries will, holders of the stock hope, be less expensive for the same range as existing technology. Commercial offerings are years down the road, though. XPeng’s move is another way to offer less expensive EVs today.

A lower- end XPeng model P7 costs about 230,000 yuan, or about $35,000. With LFP batteries, that price might drop 20,000 to 30,000 yuan, or perhaps $3,000 to $5,000. XPeng declined to comment on new pricing for EVs with the less expensive batteries, but noted that the information will come out soon.

It feels like a sound strategic move and one that investors can expect other EV makers to copy. Car buyers are still learning how to buy EVs. Range and cost, compared with traditional cars, can be a mystery. As options such as LFP batteries proliferate, buyers will begin to feel more comfortable comparing EV models, just like they do when selecting what engine they want in their automobile.

XPeng stock was up 3.3% in premarket trading. S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average futures were up about 0.5%.

The rise might not be due to the batteries, though. XPeng stock has been on a wild ride lately. Shares dropped 11% Tuesday after investors digested news that deliveries in February were lower than in January. February, however, was affected by the Lunar New Year holiday. Monthly deliveries at Li Auto (LI) and NIO (NIO) dipped as well.

Year to date, XPeng share are down about 26% after finishing 2020 up almost 200% from the stock’s $15 initial public offering price.

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Treechangers seeking a home and income should take note of this west coast property in picturesque Pickering Brook in the Perth Hills, which comes with its own live-in residents.

Known as ‘the Margaret River of the Hills’ the area boasts stunning bushland while being just 30 minutes from all the amenity Perth has to offer.

With eight bedrooms and 10 bathrooms, this property is a home and business, operating as a thriving day spa, Hidden Valley Eco Lodges and Day Spa.

The private main residence is made of rammed earth for thermal comfort and has three bedrooms, luxurious bathroom and a large open plan living area. A private jacuzzi on the spacious entertaining deck is the perfect spot for enjoying beautiful bushland views at the end of a long day.

For day spa guests, there are four deluxe spa treatment rooms serviced by qualified staff, a reception area and lounge plus a commercial kitchen. Overnight guests can choose from five lodges with fully equipped kitchen and heated jacuzzi. As a going concern with a consistently high annual turnover, it’s a unique opportunity for the right buyer.

Set over 5.46ha, the property is also home to a very special group of residents: a small herd of alpacas, which are included in the sale.

Price guide: $6.5 million

Inspection: By expression of interest

Agent: Susanne Broido, The Agency 0499 770 237