For example, when NIO was under tremendous financial pressure just months ago, it was the municipal government of Hefei that stepped in to bail the company out by investing $1 billion in cash for a 24.1% stake in the company's China's entity - and getting the company to relocate its headquarters to its province. Hefei has "hopes of creating a powerful rival to Tesla," according to Nikkei.
Similarly, other local governments have stepped into help China's young EV names. Not unlike Elon Musk's Tesla, China's Nio, Xpeng Motors, Li Auto and WM Motor have also all relied on taxpayer/state money to push their visions forward. In China, the state backing could work to divide the country's push to take on Tesla, instead of unify it, according to Nikkei.