Polestar and MG target the Chinese electric market

19 November 2018

19 November 2018

Polestar, the performance electric vehicle (EV) brand spun out of Volvo, sees China as its best opportunity for sales.

The company is owned by Chinese brand Geely, which also owns Volvo, the London Electric Vehicle Company, and has shares in Daimler. With these ties, it expects to get almost half of its total sales in the country as it rolls out three models by 2021.

The suggestion came from Polestar’s global boss Thomas Ingenlath at the Guangzhou motor show. He also suggested that the rest of the company’s vehicle sales would be split between Europe and the US.

Polestar’s initial goal is to produce a combined 50,000 to 100,000 cars a year of its first three models in its factory in Chengdu, China, Ingenlath said. Its first car, the Polestar 1, is set to begin production in mid-2019.

Following this, the carmaker will launch the Polestar 2 sedan, its first mass-market vehicle, in 2020. There is no announcement on what shape its third model will take.

Polestar will be facing competition from Tesla in the world’s largest automotive market, while BMW and Audi are also expected to launch vehicles in China. Ingenlath believes that the current lack of options in today’s market will benefit the company going forward.

′There are not enough varieties for the customers,’ he said in an interview.  ‘At the moment, it’s more about getting enough varieties and offers to the customers to make this electrification attractive.’

Electric MG

MG has also used the Guangzhou show to debut its first fully electric vehicle, the eZS. Based on the ZS compact SUV, the company has suggested further details about the vehicle will be released in December.

The carmaker is owned by Chinese manufacturer SAIC and has seen a steady move to becoming an SUV brand, with the removal of the MG6 saloon from its line-up, replaced by the GS and ZS models. The brand has previously suggested it would look to electric vehicles, following the movement led by larger corporations.

MG is growing its market in China under its domestic ownership. In 2017, the brand sold almost 135,000 vehicles, up from around 80,000 in 2016. It is already forecast to beat this result during 2018.

The company is also displaying a new model at the show, the HS. This is a larger SUV and could be a replacement for the current GS. MG recently announced a revision of its vehicle branding, with the ZS featuring new design cues, which were then passed on to its compact MG3 model. The new HS also features these cues.