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NIO Rival Xpeng Motors Raises $500 Million

Chinese electric vehicle (EV) start-up Xpeng Motors has raised another $500 million. The company said on Monday that it has completed a "Series C+" finance round with investors including Hillhouse Capital Group and the Chinese branch of Sequoia Capital. 

The Guangzhou-based automaker said that its latest funding round is an add-on to the Series C round it completed in November 2019, in which it raised about $400 million ahead of the opening of its factory in Zhaoqing. 

Xpeng was founded in 2015 by veterans of Chinese automaker Guangzhou Automobile (OTC: GNZUF) and Alibaba Group (NYSE: BABA). It began deliveries of its second model, the P7 sedan, from the new Zhaoqing factory last month.

A silver Xpeng P7, a sleek electric luxury-sports sedan.

Xpeng began shipping its second model, the P7 luxury-performance sedan, last month. Image source: Xpeng Motors.

The P7 breaks new ground for a Chinese-made electric vehicle, with a rated range of up to 706 kilometers (about 438 miles) on the generous NEDC test standard and a comprehensive advanced driver-assist system developed in-house. Its battery pack uses prismatic cells developed with (and produced by) battery giant Contemporary Amperex Technology, better known as CATL. 

The Zhaoqing factory can build up to 100,000 vehicles per year.  

Three trucks loaded with P7 sedans outside the factory.

Xpeng P7s ready for shipment at the company's new factory in Zhaoqing. Image source: Xpeng Motors.

While Xpeng is a direct rival to upscale EV maker NIO (NYSE: NIO), the two companies agreed to a deal in December that will allow Xpeng owners to recharge at NIO's high-speed charging stations throughout China. 

Xpeng's first model, the G3 crossover SUV launched in 2018, is built for Xpeng in a factory owned by the Haima Automobile Company. It's available with a maximum rated range of 520 kilometers (about 322 miles) on the NEDC test standard. 

Xpeng has delivered about 20,000 vehicles to date. 

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