The Shanghai company's net loss narrowed to 354.5 million yuan, or 0.23 yuan (US$0.03) a share. Analysts surveyed by FactSet were expecting a net loss of US$0.16 a share.
Revenue more than quintupled to 7.98 billion yuan ($1.23 billion). That compares with the estimate of $1.06 billion.
"The overall demand for our products continues to be quite strong, but the supply chain is still facing significant challenges due to the semiconductor shortage," Chief Executive William Li said in a statement.
"In light of the strong momentum under a volatile macro environment, we expect to deliver 21,000 to 22,000 vehicles in the second quarter of 2021."
The company delivered 20,060 vehicles in the first quarter, more than five times the figure of the year-earlier quarter and a 16% increase from the 2020 fourth quarter.
NIO shares at last check were 4.4% higher at $40.71.
NIO was the first car maker to have an electric-vehicle model capable of traveling 1,00 kilometers (621 miles) on a single charge.
Last month, Mizuho analysts set a $60 price target for NIO, saying the Chinese company "is a leader and innovator in the premium automotive EV segment."
The analysts also noted that NIO is domiciled in China, giving the company a "home court advantage" in the world's largest EV market.