Lotus builds first Eletre in Wuhan

Lotus builds first Eletre in Wuhan

Geely brand Lotus has completed construction of its vehicle plant in the Chinese city of Wuhan, where it produced the first example of its all-electric Eletre SUV model. The Wuhan factory is designed to have an annual capacity of 150,000 vehicles.

Wuhan is also where Lotus Technology is currently building its global headquarters, and the plant's capacity is not expected to be maxed out in the coming years. Earlier, Lotus said it plans to sell 100,000 e-vehicles in 2028 - 90,000 of which will be sedans and SUVs from the Wuhan plant, with the remaining 10,000 vehicles - the electric sports cars - to be built at Lotus' Hethel plant in the UK.

Unveiled in March, the Eletre is scheduled to begin deliveries in early 2023 and will also be exported to Europe and elsewhere. The 800-volt Stromer is the first of four electric models Lotus has announced by 2026. As Car News China writes, the Eletre is "also one of the fastest electric SUVs made in China." Propulsion is provided by an electric all-wheel drive system with 441 kW of system power, which Lotus says will allow the Eletre to accelerate from a standstill to 100 km/h in less than three seconds.

The premiere vehicle, a yellow Eletre, is thus also the first Lotus to be built in China - though it's not specified whether it's already a customer vehicle or still a pre-production model. The British brand had been trying to expand its own model range beyond lightweight sports cars under various owners in recent decades, and under Geely's leadership, it plans to do so with e-cars in the future - with only electric cars to be sold from 2028.