Update: ‘Geely electric pickup truck emerges in spy shots’ section added.
Chinese news website NetEase Auto reported on May 7, 2022, that Geely is gearing up to launch a pickup truck under a new brand called ‘Radar.’ At present, the Chinese auto giant has Geely Pickup Truck Parts (Shandong) Co. and Geely Pickup Truck Sales (Shandong) Co. under its belt, and these companies may take charge of rolling out Radar badged pickup trucks.
Moreover, the Radar trademark is owned by the Geely Group. The group filed applications for the same on December 22, 2021, and April 20, 2022. An insider in the Geely Group confirmed to NetEase Auto that this would be its new business, and the Chinese portal states that Radar would stand for “new and diverse outdoor lifestyle.”
What’s more, the report states that recruitment projects are underway for the Geely pickup truck. The Shandong Geely New Energy Commercial Vehicle Co. Ltd will channel the Geely Group’s resources into R&D, manufacturing, and sales of mid-range to high-end electric pickup trucks.
Radar Electric Truck Design & Interior
Earlier reports suggested that Farizon Auto, Geely’s commercial vehicles division, would develop the electric pickup truck to rival the Ford F-150 Lightning and the Rivian R1T. Journalist Greg Kable posted spy shots from the Chinese portals on Twitter on January 20, 2022, revealing many details. The electric pickup truck sports a conventional double-cab design and is supposedly based on a new body-on-frame chassis developed for commercial EVs.
However, the same test mule is speculated to be the Radar electric truck. Moreover, CarNewsChina has accessed the greyscale patent images. Upfront, you can spot Jeep Compass-like headlamps with an integrated DRL. A chrome strip unites the headlamps. The pickup also sports amplified wheel arches, hexagonal ORVMs, and thick tread blocks, which means the pickup could be hoisted on off-road or all-terrain tires.
The spy shots reveal interior details as well. There’s a large floating touchscreen above the central air-con vents. We see an armrest at the rear with two cup holders in another picture. Seat stitching appears premium, meaning the brand could offer high-quality leather upholstery. There’s an upmarket metallic door trim as well.
Given some visibly premium materials inside the Geely electric pickup truck, speculations of the model rivaling Ford and Rivian electric trucks could be true because the American pickups are certainly opulent in what they offer. However, CarNewsChina reported on May 10, 2022, that the electric truck would not be as expensive as the Rivian and may slot into the lower segment.
‘Smart Geely 2025’ strategy
In November 2021, the company announced the ‘Smart Geely 2025’ strategy to boost annual sales to 3.65 million units by 2025. Adopting new technologies, including zero-emission powertrains, on a broader scale would be essential to achieve the goal. The company wants to improve sales in not just China but overseas markets. It aims to overseas markets to account for 600,000+ units of the 3.65 million units in annual sales.
Geely is not just another Chinese automaker and has serious capabilities to challenge established EV companies like Tesla and Rivian. The company introduced the world’s first open-source EV platform – Sustainable Experience Architecture (SEA) – in 2020. This platform can deliver bespoke EVs with rapid or ultra-high-speed 800-volt charging system support. Its 800-volt technologies include silicon carbide power modules, going into mass production in 2023. Smart and Volvo would utilize the SEA to introduce global SUVs.
Geely wants to take advantage of the growing interest of EV customers in models with swappable battery technology. The company will install 5,000 battery swapping stations across 100 cities by 2025. That’d be a huge ramp-up from the current circa-100 battery swapping stations, which can replace batteries in just 59 seconds. On the other hand, Nio will have over 4,000 battery swapping stations by 2025.
Manufacturing & Release Date
NetEase Auto reports that the Geely electric pickup truck under the Radar brand is expected to be released sometime this year. The production location of this new project is reportedly in Zichuan District, Zibo City, Shandong Province. The site carries an investment of CNY 2.42 billion (USD 356 billion). It is unclear if Geely will field the Radar brand in the international market.
Featured image: Geely