Polestar, the Swedish EV maker owned by China’s Geely Holdings, plans to launch a smartphone alongside its upcoming SUV the Polestar 4. CEO Thomas Ingenlath shared the company’s smartphone plans with CNBC during the IAA Mobility event in Germany.
Polestar confirmed the news with TechCrunch, noting that this is part of the joint venture announced in June with Chinese smartphone maker Xingji Meizu. Geely founder and chairman Eric Li’s smartphone company Xingji Technology acquired Meizu in July 2022.
The two companies will jointly develop a user interface in Polestar EVs sold in China. The phone is being designed by the design team at Polestar and manufactured by Meizu, Polestar told TechCrunch.
The move may seem unusual to U.S. and European consumers. But in China, where there is increasingly competition, automakers are looking for any technological edge. Polestar isn’t the first automaker to experiment with its own branded smartphone in a bid to appeal to Chinese consumers who have an appetite for seamless connectivity between their phones and vehicles. Last month, Nio announced plans to launch a smartphone in September.
The automaker expects to be begin production of the Polestar 4 — its third model to be sold in China — later this year.