Electric Cars

Chinese carmaker NIO stops traffic for over an hour in Beijing

The NIO concept was reportedly stalled for over an hour thanks to an over-the-air software update.

NIO's been on a roll lately, but this spot of bad press won't do it any favors in downtown Beijing.

Antuan Goodwin/Roadshow

Having your car break down in traffic is always a serious bummer, but if you're an automaker it has to be way worse, and yet that's what reportedly happened to Chinese EV startup NIO during a recent test drive in Beijing.

According to a report published last week by the South China Morning Post, an unspecified NIO concept car was doing a development drive in downtown Beijing when the car's driver managed to initiate an over-the-air software update that made the vehicle essentially undrivable until it completed.

It's not clear what made the driver confirm the update, which he presumably did as NIO has stated that the update wouldn't have happened automatically, but the car was stalled for over an hour while the update downloaded and installed itself. This was in the middle of one of the busiest districts in China's capital city.

Representatives from NIO attempted to explain what happened on the Chinese social media platform Weibo, but mostly just threw the driver under the proverbial bus and reminded us that you should be parked when you initiate an update.

Still, despite this minor setback, NIO seems to be powering forward in its drive its drive to become one of the world's biggest electric vehicle manufacturers, having already launched several production models in China and given an excellent showing at last year's Goodwood Festival of Speed.

NIO didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

(Hat tip to Autoblog for finding the SCMP story.)