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China’s Tesla Wannabe Is Asking Investors to Pay for Potential

  • NIO seeks market cap above $8 billion with limited production
  • Tencent-backed NIO among 5 local EV makers considered unicorns
The Nio EP9 

The Nio EP9 

Photographer: Qilai Shen/Bloomberg
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Investor excitement for China’s electric-car business gets a reality check next week.

NIO Inc. will become the first major electric-car maker to have a U.S. initial public offering since Tesla Inc. in 2010, and its stock is set to start trading Sept. 12. The Tencent Holdings Ltd.-backed company seeks a valuation of $6.4 billion to $8.5 billion -- even though it’s delivered fewer than 2,000 vehicles ever.