Urban EVs are getting out of hand in China, looking more toyish than ever before in a quest to attract more buyers. The latest example is the Geely Panda Mini with a design inspired by the Panda bear, hoping to compete with the hugely popular Wuling Mini EV and the army of similarly-sized models already available in the Chinese market.
The tiny EV made its debut at a shopping center in the city of Hangzhou. The pop-up exhibition stand was bathed in pink, featuring balloons, plenty of Panda figures, and two examples of the Geely Panda Mini painted in pink and light blue.
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Besides the friendly rounded appearance and the large LED headlights that dominate the front end, other Panda references include the ear-like mirrors, the three-paw design of the wheel hubs, and the black plastic trim on the front and rear bumpers. The “Geome” lettering on the front is probably referring to Geometry which is one of the sub-brands of Geely.
Inside there is room for four passengers, all having access to a great view of the sky thanks to the panoramic sunroof. The pink-painted dashboard has a large off-center infotainment touchscreen, an elongated digital instrument cluster, plenty of storage compartments, and a dedicated area for the climate controls under the climate vents.
We know of the technical specifications of the EV thanks to information from China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology. The EV measures 3,065mm (120.6 inches) long, 1,522mm (59.9 inches) wide, and 1,600mm (62.9 inches) tall, with a wheelbase of 2,015mm (79.3 inches).
Power comes from a single front-mounted electric motor producing 40 hp (30 kW / 41 PS). A lithium-iron-phosphate battery sourced from Guoxuan High-Tech is said to offer around 150 km (93 miles) of range, similar to rival offerings from other Chinese brands.
The Panda Mini will roll out in China sometime in 2023. Pricing has yet to be announced but it is rumored to range between ¥40,000 and ¥50,000 ($5,760 – $7,200). Note that this is not the first time Geely uses the Panda nameplate, with the first-gen model being a Toyota Aygo-style ICE-powered minicar which remained in production between 2008 and 2016.