SHANGHAI -- Geely launched a premium all-electric vehicle brand
"Geometry" on Thursday as it pushes ahead with plans to
boost production of new-energy vehicles.
The move comes as automakers race to develop vehicles
powered by energy sources other than oil to meet an expected rise in
demand as the world's top car market enforces official
production quotas designed to reduce smog and emissions.
Geometry will take overseas orders but will mainly focus on
the Chinese market and will launch more than 10 EV models in multiple segments by 2025, Geely said in a
statement on Thursday.
The company added it had already received more than 26,000
orders globally for its first model, the Geometry A. The
longer-range version of the model can travel up to
500 kilometres (310.69 miles) on a single charge, Geely said.
Geely, China's highest
profile car maker with investments in Volvo and
Daimler, launched Geometry at an event in Singapore and said
the city-state would eventually become a target market.
"The launch of Geometry and its first product advances
Geely's strategic goal of becoming one of world's top 10 automotive groups," An Conghui, president of Zhejiang Geely
Holding Group, said in the statement.
Geely set up a new joint venture with Germany's Daimler just
last month to build the next generation of Smart EVs
in China. Smart is Daimler's small-car brand.
Geely is also developing new energy commercial vehicles such as
pickup trucks at another unit, Yuan Cheng Auto.
China has been a major supporter of new energy vehicles including battery electric, hybrid, and plug-in hybrid
technologies, and started implementing NEV sales quota
requirements for automakers.
According to a Reuters report, global automakers are
planning a $300 billion surge in spending on EV
technology over the next five to 10 years, with nearly half of
the money targeted at China.
Geely posted sales growth of 20 percent in 2018. However, it
is forecasting largely steady sales this year as the country's
giant auto market struggles with slower economic growth and
more cautious consumers. Last year, the overall market
contracted for the first time since the 1990s.
The Chinese carmaker bought Volvo Cars in 2010 from Ford
Motor Co. in what was China's biggest acquisition of a
foreign carmaker at the time.