Polestar Planning Chinese Showroom Expansion to Compete With Tesla

by Denis Gurskiy

The Polestar 2 is one of the most exciting Tesla Model 3 competitors yet to debut, but we only have to wait until July for deliveries to finally begin and see if it has what it takes to compete.

According to Automotive News Europe, sources familiar with the matter are stating that Polestar is planning to have a substantial expansion of its showrooms in the Chinese market to better compete with some of the other notable EV companies present in China.

According to the source, they will follow a direct-to-consumer format, with showrooms being located in high traffic areas like shopping malls. The practice has been popularized by Tesla and is key in getting people who might not be knowledgable about EVs to step inside and maybe learn something while they go about their shopping. In China the direct-to-consumer model is not only used by Tesla, but also by competing EV brands NIO and Xpeng. 

Polestar currently has only one showroom which is located in Beijing. According to the source, Polestar is planning to expand out to 20 locations, with most of them being opened during the third quarter of this year. For comparison, in China Tesla currently has over 50, NIO has about 110 locations, and Xpeng has 150 with plans to have 200 by the end of this year.

The direct method has its benefits by allowing the automaker to have full control of the pricing and managing of inventory. However, the automaker is responsible for investing in all of the showrooms themselves. However, according to the source, Polestar will have investors that will build and operate the showrooms, while Polestar will still have control of the sales and delivered. A sort of pseudo-franchise. 

If this trend continues it will be interesting to imagine whole sections of shopping malls being dedicated to automaker showrooms rather than the traditional “auto malls” that take up miles of road currently. It will no doubt be a while before a transition like that would be complete, but it’s fun to imagine nonetheless.

Polestar 2 production has already begun and the starting price for the US has been set at $59,990.

What do you guys think of the direct sales model and Polestar’s chance of success in general? Let us know down in the comments below.

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