Geely’s Polestar to open 20 showrooms in China to compete with Tesla

People look at a Polestar 2 electric sedan displayed in a shopping mall in Shanghai, China May 5, 2020. Picture taken May 5, 2020. REUTERS/Yilei Sun

Polestar, the premium electric vehicle maker owned by China’s Geely, plans to open 20 showrooms in the mainland, as it prepares for delivery of its Polestar 2 electric sedans to compete with Tesla Inc’s locally made Model 3.

Polestar, which currently has only one showroom in Beijing, plans to have 20 in 17 Chinese cities, the automaker said in a statement on Wednesday. The Gothenburg, Sweden-based company is manufacturing cars in China’s eastern city of Taizhou.

Showroom strength is becoming an important differentiator for electric vehicle (EV) makers in the world’s biggest auto and EV market, as they line up model launches.

The automaker plans to export Polestar 2 sedans to Europe and the United States, and will open showrooms first in Shanghai and then expand to coastal Ningbo and southern Guangzhou. The showrooms will be mostly in shopping malls.

Reuters had reported Polestar’s China showroom network expansion plan on Tuesday, citing people familiar with the matter.