Polestar deliveries remain behind 2022

A second quarter uptick still not enough to lift sales above those of two years ago

Polestar deliveries remain behind 2022
The challenger brand is still facing its toughest sales year since 2021

Sino-Swedish EV pure play Polestar delivered 13,000 vehicles in Q2, a strong rebound from subdued Q1 sales. But volumes still trail not only the first half of last year but H1’22 too.

The firm’s cumulative sales for 2024 thus far are 20,200, behind the 27,800 units it shifted in the same period in 2023 and 21,200 units the year before that (see main image). While Q2 volumes were almost 18pc lower than in Q2’23, the two prior quarters had both seen c.40pc year-on-year declines (see Fig.1).

Fig.1: Q2's year-on-year drop in sales less pronounced than in two previous quarters

And Polestar is hopeful that this slowdown in annual sales fall is the start of a recovery, as its new Polestar 3 and 4 products help to drive an increase in deliveries again. “We have strong momentum as we enter the second half of the year,” suggests Polestar CEO Thomas Ingenlath — with the US, Sweden, Norway and Germany singled out as key markets for that momentum.

“Our two new SUVs have received stellar reviews from the global media. First test drive slots were booked out and additional slots are filling up fast,” Ingenlath continues.

The second quarter’s relatively improved delivery performance had, according to Polestar, a positive impact on inventory levels and cash flow. And it predicts “an even stronger uptick in deliveries through the second half of the year, as sales of the two premium SUVs build”.

But it still expects “short-term impacts” from the introduction of import duties, alongside continued pricing pressure in global EV markets, including China.

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Considering these factors and to meet its cash-flow breakeven towards the end of 2025 target, the firm is again adapting its business plan — including implementing additional mitigating actions beyond a 15pc staff reduction announced in January that was in addition to a 10pc reduction announced last summer. Polestar expects to provide updated guidance later in the year.

Production of the Polestar 3 in South Carolina is on track to start at end of the summer, while manufacture of the Polestar 4 is set to start in South Korea in the second half of 2025. Both will mitigate impacts of announced tariffs, the firm believes.

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