2 people died after a Nio electric car they were test driving fell 3 floors in Shanghai, the company says

Elias Holdenried Nio ET7

A person looks at one of Nio’s self-driving electric cars in Germany.NOK

  • According to Nio, two people died after a Nio electric car they were test driving fell three stories.

  • The company did not provide any information on the cause of the accident in its statement.

  • Social media users in China said Nio has a responsibility to ensure the test drive is safe.

Two people died after an electric car belonging to Tesla’s Chinese rival Nio crashed three floors in Shanghai on Wednesday afternoon, the company said on China’s Twitter-like platform Weibo.

The two people were testing one of Nio’s cars at the Shanghai headquarters when the incident occurred, the statement said. One of the people was a Nio employee while the other worked for a supplier.

Photos shared on social media and published in Chinese media appear to show the chaos at the scene of the accident.

In one of the photos, rescue workers appear to surround a gray car that is lying on its side, according to a tweet from the China-based Electric Vehicle News Agency CnEVPost. Broken glass and debris can be seen around the vehicle.

“Based on the analysis of the situation at the crime scene, it can be tentatively confirmed that it was an accident and had nothing to do with the vehicle itself,” Nio wrote in the Weibo statement. The investigations are ongoing, it said.

The company did not provide any information on the cause of the accident in its statement. Various media reports referred to the ground from which the car fell as a test drive area, parking lot or showroom. Nio didn’t immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

The car involved in Wednesday’s incident appeared to be an ET5 model, which features self-driving technology, according to the South China Morning Post (SCMP).

Another Nio vehicle was involved in a fatal accident last year. A Chinese businessman died in August after his Nio ES8, which had its self-driving system activated, collided with another vehicle on a highway in Fujian province, according to SCMP.

Founded in 2014, Nio markets itself as a premium car brand with a focus on autonomous cars. It is often seen as a rival to Tesla. Nio is listed in New York, Hong Kong and Singapore.

Several Weibo users questioned Nio’s handling of Wednesday’s incident.

Zhongcao Daren Zhuge, a Weibo influencer with 5.1 million followers, said Friday that Nio is responsible for making sure the environment for the test drive is safe. “Why wasn’t the car tested in a designated area? Why were there no crash barriers and protective devices? Have employees received safety training?” he wrote in a Weibo post.

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