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Volvo’s electric vehicle brand Polestar sees record first-quarter sales, new SUV to be officially unveiled in October –

Author: Eric Walz

The Polestar 2 is recognized as the first vehicle in the world to feature Google’s new Android Automotive operating system.

The electric performance brand Polestar, which is jointly operated by Volvo Cars and its parent company Geely in China, reported record sales in the first four months of 2022 along with a growing number of vehicle orders. Polestar attributes its continued global expansion to the growing number of vehicle orders for the Polestar 2 EV, its first mainstream model.

In the first four months of 2022, sales of Polestar vehicles more than doubled to around 13,600 units. Customer bookings also more than tripled to nearly 23,000 from the same period in 2021.

Polestar has expanded its global presence to 23 markets so far, up from 19 at the end of 2021. The company’s goal is to expand to 30 markets by the end of 2023. These new markets include the Middle East and Europe, where Polestar plans to expand into Spain and Portugal for the first time. imminently. Plans are also in place for Polestar to begin operations in Israel and Italy later this year.

“We promised growth and we are delivering on that promise,” said Thomas Ingenlath, CEO of Polestar.

With the number of orders growing in recent months, Polestar expected to hit its target of 65,000 vehicle sales in 2022. However, the company warned that it faced supply chain constraints that continue to challenge the rest of the global automotive industry, which will likely affect its production and deliveries for the rest of 2022.

Polestar says prolonged government shutdowns due to COVID-19 in China during the first half of 2022 disrupted vehicle production at its factory, where the Polestar 2 is manufactured. As a result, Polestar has announced a reduction in the number of customer vehicle sales it will be able to deliver in 2022 from 65,000 to around 50,000.

The reduction for 2022 is 100% attributable to lockdowns in China, according to Polestar.

Polestar and its partners Volvo Cars and Geely are continuously working to manage these ongoing supply chain disruptions. Those plans include adding a second production shift at its factory in China to help recover some of the production losses. Polestar remains optimistic that the company will achieve its targeted sales volumes from 2023 to 2025. By 2025, Polestar’s goal is to sell 290,000 vehicles per year.

“The fundamentals for electric car sales growth remain in place and the momentum is stronger than the uncertainties we are currently witnessing. No short- or medium-term economic effects have shaken our goal of selling 290,000 cars in 2025- 2010. times what we sold in 2021,” Ingenlath said.

Polestar will soon launch a new electric performance SUV called Polestar 3 that will compete with the Tesla Model Y, Ford Mustang Mach-E and other similar electric crossovers. The SUV and compact crossover segment remains very popular with consumers, so the upcoming Polestar 3 could become a big seller for Polestar.

The company unveiled a camouflaged teaser of the Polestar 3 SUV at a media event in New York last December. The full reveal will take place in October.

“We believe our future growth will be further accelerated by our entry into the lucrative SUV market later this year with the October world premiere of the long-awaited Polestar 3 electric SUV,” Ingenlath said.

The Polestar 3 will also be built in the United States as well as China. The electric vehicle will be built at Volvo’s automotive plant in Ridgeville, South Carolina. All Polestar 3 vehicles built in South Carolina will be sold in the US market, the company said. The plant has the capacity to produce up to 150,000 cars per year.

“We will build America for Americans,” Ingenlath said at the media preview in New York. “Polestar 3 is set to launch in 2022 as a premium electric SUV that will define how SUVs look in the electric age.”

The automaker’s Polestar 2 is also credited as the world’s first vehicle to feature Google’s new Android Automotive operating system integrated into the vehicle’s infotainment system, which allows drivers and passengers to access Google services. such as Maps, Play and Assistant without having to synchronize a smartphone. .

The Polestar 2 also runs a full version of the Vivaldi web browser directly from the vehicle’s infotainment screen. Vivaldi Browser runs on Android Automotive OS and is the first web browser available for the platform.

In November 2021, Polestar teased the Polestar 5 sedan, which is based on the Precept concept unveiled in 2020. The company says it will be “an electric performance four-door grand tourer”. The ranking will make it a competitor to the Mercedes-Benz EQS, Tesla Model S and Lucid Air.

The Polestar 5 The launch is scheduled for 2024. The electric vehicle will present the future vision of the brand in terms of design and technology, according to Polestar.

Polestar was established in 2017 as a new stand-alone Swedish manufacturer of premium electric vehicles. Founded by Volvo Cars and Geely Holding, Polestar has access to Volvo Cars’ technology and engineering synergies and benefits from significant economies of scale.

Like Tesla, Rivian and Lucid Motors, Polestar will not have a network of traditional dealerships to sell its vehicles. Instead, the company is opening dozens of “Polestar Spaces,” which will serve as retail showrooms for customers to experience Polestar vehicles in person and learn more about features and technology.

Polestar Spaces will offer services such as in-home test drives, free pickup and delivery and other conveniences for Polestar consumers.

Each Polestar Spaces will be staffed with knowledgeable product experts who can answer any customer questions about Polestar vehicles. Customers will also be able to place their vehicle orders on site.

Polestar CEO Ingenlath also told the audience that he believes “there is a fundamental difference between Polestar and many other electric car companies”.

Polestar recently announced a global partnership with car rental company Hertz to supply 65,000 vehicles over the next five years. Availability of Polestar vehicles from Hertz is expected to begin this spring in Europe and late 2022 in North America.

Polestar will also soon be a public company. The company intends to list on Nasdaq in a proposed business combination with blank check company Gores Guggenheim, Inc. The merger is expected to close in the first half of 2022 and will help Polestar raise capital from Wall Street investors.