China’s EV Startup LEVDEO Files for Bankruptcy, Dealers Report Suspected car-Making Scams

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Public information showed that LEVDEO (or LETIN) added a new bankruptcy review case in China, the case number is (2023) Lu 0725 Po Shen No. 1, the applicant and the respondent are both LEVDEO Automobile Group Co., Ltd. And The People’s Court of Changle County, Weifang City, Shandong Province.

Founded in 2008, LEVDEO first focused on low-speed electric vehicles. From 2016 to 2018, the annual sales of LEVDEO reached 150,000, 210,000, and 287,000 vehicles respectively, and the annual sales exceeded 12 billion yuan. It has been the sales champion of low-speed electric vehicles for three consecutive years, and its market share once exceeded 30%.

In 2018, the six ministries and commissions of China issued the “Notice on Strengthening the Management of Low-speed Electric Vehicles”, requiring all localities to carry out rectification of low-speed electric vehicles, and clearly pointed out that the increase in production capacity of low-speed electric vehicles is prohibited.

LEVDEO began to transform into automobile production. In April 2018, LEVDEO acquired Shanxi Qinxing Automobile Co., Ltd. and obtained the production qualification of new energy commercial vehicles and special vehicles. In January 2019, LEVDEO acquired Sichuan Yema Motor for 1.45 billion yuan, and obtained the production qualifications for new energy vehicles, traditional fuel passenger vehicles and buses.

After obtaining the production qualification, the sales of the first i-series models launched by LEVDEO were not satisfactory. The annual sales volume in 2019 was only 3,387 vehicles, and they were completely discontinued after only one year of listing.

In 2020, LEVDEO launched the mini electric car Mango. With a high cost performance of less than 30,000 yuan, the cumulative sales in 2021 reached about 30,000 units.

However, due to factors such as rising raw material prices in 2022, the already meager profits of micro electric vehicles were unsustainable. LEVDEO Mango announced a price increase of 1,000-3,000 yuan in September 2022. Coupled with the lack of technology, production capacity, supply chain, marketing channels and other accumulations, which was born in low-speed electric vehicles, the sales volume of LEVDEO Mango dropped sharply in 2022, and it sold about 20,000 vehicles that year.

Since 2021, LEVDEO has been exposed to serious problems in its capital chain and production capacity, and has defaulted on payments to dealers. According to public information, since the beginning of this year, LEVDEO has been involved in about a hundred civil cases, most of which are defendants, involving contract disputes such as sales and loans, involving a total amount of 40.9 million yuan in execution.

LEVDEO announced on November 21, 2022 that it has completed a round A financing of 3.2 billion yuan, which was led by Weifang Weicheng West Investment and Development Group. However, LEVDEO stated that the financing funds were not in place as agreed.

In February 2023, LEVDEO was jointly reported by dealers, and the “Open Letter from Jiangsu Dealers to the Joint Investigation of LEVDEO ” signed and stamped by dealers collectively believed that LEVDEO was a fraudulent company.

The latest update of the official account of LEVDEO was on March 8. As of now, the official website of LEVDEO cannot be accessed.