Polestar celebrates opening of new assembly plant in Chengdu, China

That’s one bright facility.


Polestar has two very impressive cars on the way, one high-mileage plug-in hybrid and one battery-electric hatchback. Of course, these cars need somewhere to be built, and the automaker is one step closer to being ready to ship cars to customers.

Polestar announced Monday evening that it has opened its first production facility in Chengdu, China. Its first product is the aptly named Polestar 1, the first vehicle to carry the Polestar badge. The building was opened on schedule, and the automaker expects its first deliveries to take place before the end of the year.

The former (and current, sort of) performance arm of Volvo had environmental responsibility on the mind when creating the Chengdu facility. Specifically, the automaker wanted to aim for LEED Gold status, in addition to being one of the greenest car factories in China.

The building isn’t just a factory, either. While Polestar will build some 500 Polestar 1 cars per year in Chengdu — totaling 1,500 over the car’s three-year lifecycle — there’s also a customer experience center tucked in there. In addition to an atrium that will let visitors check out the factory floor from a distance, there’ll be a test track in the mix. I think that part is outside, though.

Polestar’s first offering looks to be a sweet one. With a combined output of 600 horsepower and 738 pound-feet of torque, there’s definitely a focus on performance in the Polestar 1. Yet, its 34-kWh battery pack should enable plenty of engine-off cruising — roughly 93 miles’ worth, by NEDC measurements (EPA estimates might dip as low as the mid-60s). We actually took a spin in the car earlier this year and walked away impressed. With a price of $155,000, expectations are high.

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