Volvo’s Polestar announces launch markets for first PEV

Volvo’s performance label Polestar has announced the initial markets for the launch of its premier performance plug-in. The Polestar 1 PHEV will be offered through so-called Polestar Space outlets. 

Geely’s premium performance arm Polestar, that had declared in June to become an electric label under the Volvo roof, has set eyes on marketplaces worldwide and wants to launch its first PEV with a new business model based on subscriptions.

The Polestar 1 is to hit the shelves from mid-2019, first in China, the States, Germany, Sweden, Norway, and the Netherlands. Clearly the Volvo brand is targeting large and also maturing markets when it comes to electrification. Other countries will be added to the distribution network later.

The Polestar 1 will be made exclusively in China and facility is already under construction in Chengdu (we reported) and while so far there are only 500 units planned a year, Polestar said demand already exceeds said capacity.

In terms of sales, Polestar plans to set up what the label calls Polestar Spaces and it is to be expected that they will largely follow Tesla concept stores. The business model too seems to have taken inspiration from start-up methods as it is a subscription model, that is basically a reservation option – for now.

Reservations shall be converted to orders once the regular order books for the Polestar 1 open in early 2018. Once a deal is sealed, the Polestar 1 and all future Polestar cars will challenge classic ownership through offering a no-deposit, all-inclusive monthly payment that covers insurance, depreciation, collection and delivery for inclusive servicing, and various on-demand benefits as-and-when required. Pricing has yet to be released.

This subscription model could benefit Polestar greatly in terms of making a premium offer accessible to a broader customer base. Furthermore, it may enable second lives for batteries that could be collected in a concerted manner.

The Polestar 1 has been designed as a plug-in hybrid but claims an electric driving range of 150 kilometres on one charge. However, five all-electric models are scheduled for launch throughout 2021 and both Geely and Volvo are ready to invest hundreds of millions (we reported).


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