Tesla killer? Volvo spin-off unveils Google-powered all-electric sedan
Volvo and Chinese firm Geely Holding have announced their first fully-electric vehicle, Polestar 2, joining the ranks of carmakers trying to challenge Tesla’s dominance in the electric car market.
The new “Tesla killer,” designed specifically to compete with the fast-selling Model 3, is a premium five-door fastback with two electric motors.
It is expected to drive 500 kilometers (275 miles) on a single charge thanks to a 78-kilowatt-hour battery (72 kWh for the Chinese market) integrated into the floor.
Production of the electric car in both right and left-hand-drive versions is to start in 2020 in southeast China, according to the automaker. The initial launch markets include China, the US, Canada, and some European countries, and the company vowed to consider further expansion.
“Polestar 2 is our first fully electric car and first volume model,” Polestar’s chief executive officer, Thomas Ingenlath, said in statement on Wednesday.
The range of the new Tesla rival almost equals the long-range version of the Model 3, which is 310 miles, and the price will also be close to the one Elon Musk’s company offers. The car will be priced from €39,900 ($45,500) up to €59,900 ($68,000).
However, during the first year of production it will sell only the limited edition launch model for $63,000, and federal and state incentives can drop the price by $7,500.
Polestar 2 is one of the first cars in the world to feature an infotainment system powered by Android which allows drivers to use Google Assistant, Google Maps and other apps from the Google Play Store.
The company, jointly owned by Volvo Car Group and Zhejiang Geely Holding, launched its first car – the Polestar 1 hybrid performance coupe – in 2017. It also plans to start production of a fully electric SUV which will be Polestar 3.
Other major auto companies have already joined the race to win the hearts of eco-friendly customers, with Jaguar launching its I-Pace fully-electric model and Porsche preparing to start sales of its first fully-electric sports car, Taycan.
Last year, Volkswagen-owned premium brand Audi unveiled battery-powered crossover E-Tron.
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