Geely-backed Zeekr released the detailed drawing of its Zeekr 009 on October 25, showing that the second row of seats was adjusted towards the end, leaving little space in the third row. Li Xiang, Founder of rival Li Auto, commented on the seat arrangement design, which prompted a response by Victor Yang, Senior Vice President of Geely and CMO of Zeekr.
Li Xiang put it bluntly by saying that the passengers in the back row would be squatting in the trunk, and the third row of seats seemed to have been removed. To this, Yang posted a picture and said, “The room in the third row is quite spacious after the seats of the second row are adjusted towards the end. You’re welcome to compare and experience in person.”
Li Xiang and Victor Yang have interacted on social media before. In April 2019, Yang shared a photo on Weibo, showing that Eric Li, chairman of Geely, gave Li Xiang a thumbs up. At that time, Li Xiang commented, “The sudden visit of Eric is my happiest thing today and it’s enough for me to brag all my life.”
The Zeekr 009 will be launched on November 1. As a medium and large MPV, it has a length, width and height of 520920241856mm and a wheelbase of over 3204mm. Considering the air suspension, the height of the car can reach 1867mm. Judging from the parameters, the internal space will not be too crowded. The reason why Li Xiang questioned the rear space of Zeekr 009 was due to the angle from which the picture was taken. The picture posted by Yang shows a much larger space.
As for the reason why Li Xiang questioned the Zeekr 009, some people think that l, although Li Auto has not launched its own MPV model, the Zeekr 009 overlaps with Li Auto‘s own products in positioning and target use. The Zeekr 009 will meet users’ needs of business and home travel by providing a conference mode and supporting Switch game access. Zeekr promised to provide a more spacious paradise for children, which is similar to Li Auto‘s slogan of “creating the ultimate experience for family travel” for its L9 model.
The sales of Zeekr models is also indistinguishable from that of Li Auto. According to the China Passenger Car Association, in September this year, the sales volume of the Zeekr 001 was 8,276 units, an increase of 15.5% from the previous month, ranking eighth in new energy SUVs in that month, while Li Auto‘s L9 ranked seventh, with a sales volume of about 10,000 units in that month.
In addition, according to the trading data of a Chinese used vehicle platform, Zeekr 001 enjoys the highest three-year preservation rate among all new energy vehicles in China, exceeding Tesla Model Y.
At present, the high-end MPV market in China is developing rapidly. According to the latest statistics of the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers, from January to September this year, the cumulative sales volume of models above 300,000 yuan continued to increase, among which MPV models accounted for 0.5% with sales of about 74,000 units. According to the data of China Passenger Car Association, the sales volume of MPVs in the first eight months of 2022 totaled 599,000 units.