Chinese joint venture Didi EV with Li Auto files for bankruptcy (court)

The logo of Chinese company Didi Global Inc. is pictured during the IPO on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., June 30, 2021. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

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SHANGHAI, Aug 11 (Reuters) – The joint venture between Chinese ride-hailing company Didi and Li Auto has filed for bankruptcy, according to a court filing, indicating the end of a four-year-old manufacturing partnership electric vehicles (EV).

The company, 51% owned by Didi and 49% by Li Auto, submitted the bankruptcy petition to Beijing’s No. 1 Intermediate People’s Court on Thursday, according to a statement posted on a website operated by the Supreme Court.

Didi and Li Auto did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

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Didi and Li Auto, formerly known as Chehejia, established Beijing Judian Chuxing Technology in 2018 to develop and manufacture customized smart electric vehicles for ride-hailing services.

It was also part of a series of partnerships Didi has made with major automakers, including Volkswagen, Toyota (7203.T) and BYD, with the intention of adopting more electric vehicles with self-driving technologies in its fleets.

While Didi and BYD launched a co-developed D1 electric vehicle model in 2020, most collaborations have made little headway.

Beijing’s scrutiny for an alleged data security breach forced Didi to delist from the New York Stock Exchange and has curtailed its business since last July.

However, the ride-sharing company quietly pursued a car-making project, codenamed “Da Vinci”, Reuters reported in June. Read more

It was also in advanced talks with state-backed Sinomach Automobile (600335.SS) to buy a third of its electric vehicle unit, Reuters reported then.

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Reporting by Zhang Yan, Brenda Goh; Editing by Robert Birsel

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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