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China new models January 2024: Polestar 4, Geely Galaxy E8 start

Geely Galaxy E8

It is now time to study the newcomers in the Chinese wholesales charts. This month, once again we have 9 new models hitting dealerships, 6 of them Chinese. This still shows domestic brands lead in terms of dynamism and launch frequency. All launches are New Energy vehicles (EV or PHEV). To fully understand the scope of the Chinese market, make sure you consult our Exclusive Guide to all 194 active Chinese Brands.

1. Geely Galaxy E8 (3,058 sales)

Galaxy started a new sub-brand by Geely unveiled in February 2023. It is dedicated to premium long-range hybrid and pure electric vehicles, and has had tremendous success in China so far. It is now a standalone brand with its own logo, website and dealerships. The Galaxy L7 SUV, launched last June, already peaked at 11,117 sales in August while the L6 sedan, launched last September, peaked at 6,389 this month and will surely improve on that. Galaxy plans to have 7 models by 2025.

The E8 sedan is 5.01m long with a wheelbase of 2.925m. It stands on the SEA platform, also used in Geely’s other brands such a Volvo, Zeekr, Smart and Lotus. It has a drag coefficient of just 0.199 Cd and features hidden door handles. Its interior is stunning, composed of a 45-inch 8K screen that extends to the entire width of the dashboard. It is only 1 cm thick. It also has Augmented Reality Head up Display and 12 speakers. The E8 is priced from 175,800 to 228,800 yuan (22,900-29,800€ or US$24,700-32,100). The top-of-the-range variant accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 3.49 seconds. It will compete with the likes of the BYD Han (189,800-321,800 yuan), Zeekr 007 (209,900-29,900 yuan), Exeed Sterra ES (198,800-339,800 yuan) and BYD Song L (189,800-249,800 yuan).

Bar for success: 7,500 monthly sales

2. Xpeng X9 (2,478 sales)

This month Xpeng launched its 6th vehicle and very first MPV. The X9 is 5.293m long with a 3.16m wheelbase, it is has 7 seats split into three rows in a 2+2+3 setup. It eclipses the 0 to 100 km/h in just 5.7 seconds, which is pretty fast for an MPV. There are two powertrains available: a front-wheel drive including a 235 KW electric motor and an all-wheel drive with a total of 370 KW. The interior features a 17.3-inch infotainment screen and a digital instrument panel. The X9 also offers a 21.4-inch on the roof for rear passengers. Ranges are 610, 640 and 702 km.

It is the most expensive Xpeng so far and by far, with a price range of 359,800 to 419,800 yuan (46,900-54,700€ or US$50,500-59,000). For comparison the G9 SUV starts at 263,900 yuan. Xpeng says it received 30,000 pre orders in the first 6 weeks, which is encouraging given the starting price for pre-sales was 28,200 yuan more expensive than the final price. The X9 will compete with such premium MPVs as the Voyah Dreamer (339,900-689,900 yuan), Hycan V09 (318,800-438,800 yuan) and Denza D9 (349,800-660,000 yuan).

Bar for success: 7,000 monthly sales

3. Nammi 01 (1,884 sales)

Nammi (纳米) is a brand by Dongfeng unveiled in August 2023. It focuses on small EVs and its first model is this 01 small hatch. It is 4.03m long with a 2.66m wheelbase. Its exterior styling has been compared with the Smart #1 with some calling the Nammi 01 a copycat. It features the mandatory hidden door handles. Despite its sharp pricing, the 01 supports Level 2 autonomous driving. Its features include autonomous and remove parking, adaptive cruise control, lane keep assist, traffic sign recognition and forward collision warning. It is powered by a 70 KW electric motor and comes with two available ranges: 330 and 430 km.

Once again for the price the 01’s interior looks pretty impressive. It has a small digital instrument panel and a 12.8-inch infotainment screen in the centre with over the air updates and intelligence voice control available. The Nammi 01 is priced from 74,800 to 104,800 yuan (9,700-13,650€ or US$10,500-14,700) and will compete with such blockbusters as the BYD Seagull (73,800-89,800 yuan) and Wuling Bingo (59,800-88,800 yuan). Establishing a bar for success is tricky as this is the first model of the brand, but to mark its territory we’d want at least 5,000 sales as a regular performance for the small Nammi.

Bar for success: 5,000 monthly sales

4. Chery Fengyun A8 (1,066 sales)

Having strongly focused on SUVs under its Tiggo sub-brand, Chery has recently put some energy in its sedans and resuscitated the Fengyun sub-brand to dedicate it to new energy vehicles. The A8 is a 4.78m long sedan with a 2.79m wheelbase. The front grille shape is reminiscent of Lexus. The door handles are not hidden (gasp!). The power is PHEV and combines a 115 KW 1.5 turbo engine with a 150 KW electric motor. Pure electric range is 127 km while combined hybrid range is 1,400 km. Batter charging from 30% to 80% takes 19 minutes.

Inside, the interior features a single digital tile with two 12.3-inch screens: one for instrument panel and a central one for infotainment. The car includes a karaoke function, and level 2 driving assistance featuring front and rear collusion warning and adaptive cruise control at any speed. The A8 is priced from 119,900 to 149,900 yuan (15,600-19,500€ or US$16,800-21,100), in line and worryingly competing with the Chery Arrizo 8 (108,900-146,900 yuan). Other rivals include the BYD Qin Plus (99,800-179,800 yuan) and Geely Galaxy L6 (115,800-149,800 yuan). The Arrizo 8 had a stunning month in January, topping 15,000 units. We can’t expect the same level for the Fengyun A8 but a third of this volume would be satisfactory.

Bar for success: 5,000 monthly units.

5. Leapmotor C10 (847 sales)

The Leapmotor C10 is a mid-size SUV at 4.739m long and with a 2.825m wheelbase. It is the brand’s first model to be launched after a joint-venture between Stellantis (51%) and Leapmotor (49%) was agreed. The C10 is scheduled to launch internationally in Q3 2024. Its exterior design is in line with previous Leapmotor vehicles, it is sleek without being extravagant. It is available in two powertrains: a rear-wheel drive range extender EREV combining a 94 hp 1.5L and a 228 hp electric motor with a pure electric range of 210 km and comprehensive range of 1,190 km, and a rear-wheel drive 228 hp BEV for a 530 km range.

The interior features two separate digital screens: a 10.25-inch instrument panel and a 14.6-inch infotainment central screen. Optional autonomous driving is controlled by 1 LiDAR, 5 millimeter wave radars, 12 cameras, and 12 ultrasonic radars. The C10 is priced from 151,800 to 185,800 yuan (19,800-24,200€ or US$21,300-26,100) which is a higher starting price than the larger C11 (149,800-209,800 yuan). The C10 will compete in size with the Tesla Model Y (258,900-363,900 yuan) and in price with models including the Shenlan S7 (149,900-207,900 yuan) and BYD Song Plus (154,800-219,900 yuan). The C11 peaked at 10,024 wholesales last August and is currently above the 5,000 mark. It’s a good benchmark for the C10.

Bar for success: 5,000 monthly sales

6. Polestar 4 (186 sales)

The Polestar 4 launches in China, where it is produced in a factory in Hangzhou Bay, a few months earlier than worldwide where it is due to start in summer 2024. The 4 will also be produced in Busan, South Korea. It is a coupe SUV unveiled in April 2023 at the Shanghai Auto Show. It is 4.839m long with a 2.999m wheelbase. The standout feature (or non-feature) of the Polestar 4 is the absence of rear window. It is replaced with a roof-mounted camera system. Note it also features a full-length glass roof.

Two powertrains are available: a 272hp single motor rear-wheel drive and a 544 hp dual motor all-wheel drive. Polestar says the 4 is its fastest production car, achieving 0 to 100km/h in 3.8 seconds. The cockpit features a 10.2-ich digital driver display and a 15.4-inch digital centre display. The 4 is priced from 299,900 to 399,900 yuan (39,100-52,100€ or US$42,100-56,200), which is almost exactly the same starting price as the Polestar 2 (299,800-358,800 yuan). Competitors include the Tesla Model Y (258,900-363,900 yuan) and Zeekr 001 (300,000-769,000 yuan).

Bar for success: 4,000 monthly sales

7. Arcfox Alpha S5 (15 sales)

Arcfox is a brand by Beijing Auto dedicated to upmarket electric vehicles. It is in good shape, with retail sales up 19% in 2023 to 14,152. It is the 4th model currently sold by the brand alongside the Alpha S sedan, Alpha T SUV and Kayla MPV. The Alpha S5 is a sporty sedan, with a decidedly uncreative name. It is offered in three BEV engine options: 185 kW, 200 kW and 390 kW. The interior features a large portrait central screen and no instrument panel, supposedly replaced by an augmented reality head up display. Price is not known yet but for comparison the Arcfox Alpha 5 started at 189,800 yuan so the Alpha S5 should commence at around 200,000 yuan (26,000€ or US$28,100). The Alpha S peaked at 2,333 last December so sales expectations for the Alpha S5 are limited.

Bar for success: 1,500 monthly sales

The BMW i5 (5 sales) and Polestar 2 (1 sale) also appeared for the first time in the wholesales charts this month.

This Post Has 9 Comments
    1. Europe dead? Many markets are dominated by luxury brands. Audi, BMW, Cupra, Alfa, MINI, Land Rover are all growing fast. It doesn’t look like a decline.
      ACEA results for January will be ready for discussion soon.

      1. There is no comparison between european EVs or chinese EVs for the same price, the chinese are better, cheaper, more efficient and beautiful. The id7 costs 20k€ more than this Geely E8, and the chinese looks much better.

    2. It can’t be fully compared, the Chinese government subsidizes a lot of automakers to sell at a loss. Example of NIO. Of course there are exceptions, BYD is profitable and technologically rivals Tesla. BYD can make cars faster than VW, and a Chinese worker’s salary is one-third that of an American worker.
      Overall, the EV environment is distorted, see subsidies for Tesla Brandenburg. European automakers will feel the heat and this is positive for efficiency. For example, Škoda will lay off 3% of people now to increase efficiency.

      People have to work to earn money. When that happens, there will be a high standard of living and a stable currency. I read that in 1970 1 dollar could buy over 4 Swiss francs. Now you don’t even get 1 for a one dollar. It’s the same with the Euro. I remember a time when the Euro was stronger than the CHF. The problems are in printing money without work. Then “asocial” networks, their contribution is devastating.

      1. The european government also subsidizes the automakers, in fact most of the european and american automakers wouldn’t exist without the aid of the governments.

    3. I don‘t know. You’re always sooooo negative.

      I don‘t see anything special here though, to be honest. The Geely is ok. Polestar too. But Somehow all look as they come from the same company 😉

      1. In my opinion, the Polestar looks 10 years older and it’s way more expensive than the Geely. This shows how the Chinese are so ahead.

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