Shares of Chinese Tesla Rival Xpeng Drop By 5% As Head Of Autonomous Driving Resigns

Xpeng, the Chinese electric vehicle start-up and competitor to Tesla, experienced a decline of approximately 5% in its shares on Wednesday following the announcement of the resignation of its head of autonomous driving. Xinzhou Wu, the vice president of autonomous driving at Xpeng, tendered his resignation citing “personal and family reasons,” leaving the company at a critical juncture in its development.

In Wu’s stead, Liyun Li, the senior director of Xpeng’s autonomous driving team, will assume the role. Li has been at the helm of the project team responsible for Xpeng’s advanced driver-assistance system, known as XNGP. According to Xpeng, Li has been well-prepared for the transition, which brings stability to the autonomous driving division during this leadership change.

Xpeng’s CEO, He Xiaopeng, commended Wu’s significant contribution to propelling the company into a leading position in autonomous driving technology. However, Wu’s departure comes at a time when Xpeng is facing strong competition from upstart rivals like Nio and Li Auto, as well as established giants BYD and Tesla in the highly competitive Chinese electric vehicle market.

Despite facing losses, Xpeng delivered 11,008 vehicles in July, indicating a positive sign of recovery for the company’s business. Xpeng has been striving to distinguish itself from competitors by positioning as more advanced in autonomous driving and other technologies. Their main semi-autonomous driving product, XNGP, is being positioned as a rival to Tesla’s Autopilot.

Xpeng’s CEO reassured investors that the company will continue its technology development efforts. He emphasized their commitment to a clear roadmap for in-house developed autonomous driving technology and their strategic partnership with the Volkswagen Group. Xiaopeng expressed his personal dedication to leading the autonomous driving team and strengthening their position in the realm of Smart EV technologies.

Despite the leadership change, Xpeng remains focused on advancing its autonomous driving capabilities and maintaining a competitive edge in the fast-evolving electric vehicle market in China. Investors and enthusiasts will keep a close eye on Xpeng’s progress and strategic moves as they navigate the dynamic landscape of the electric vehicle industry.

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