Chinese automaker Geely on Thursday launched a premium EV model, named Zeekr 001, and already started to take orders for the sedan, which is priced between RMB 266,000 and 345,000 (USD 40,756 to 52,861), according to posts on Zeekr’s official Weibo account.
Zeekr is a new joint venture of Geely Holding—with a 51% stake—and its affiliate Geely Auto, according to a filing with the Hong Kong Stock Exchange on March 23.
“Zeekr 001 is competitive in the EV market in China and a close contender for Xpeng’s P7 model, which was released last year,” Zhang Xiang, an auto analyst with a government-affiliated think tank, told KrASIA on Friday. It has attractive factors such as autonomous driving features enabled by Mobileye technologies, a 712-kilometer range, and body length of five meters, according to Zhang.
He further said that compared to Xpeng, Geely has more solid financials and more experience in auto making.
Geely, founded in 1986, has been making various efforts to stay relevant in the EV era. Together with Baidu, it formed a joint venture called Jidu to roll out electric vehicles in three years. Zeekr will not affect this partnership and Jidu will most likely produce cars that are different, as the two companies do not share the same software system, Zhang added.