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The most insane people mover yet? Zeekr 009 is China's 400kW/686Nm six-seater to make the Kia Carnival shake in its boots

This distant and fully electric Volvo relative brings supercar performance to the people mover world.

China’s people mover market is having a boom, as its domestic automakers hop on the electrification craze to make increasingly extreme versions of the otherwise-humble people mover.

The Zeekr 009 is the latest, and perhaps the most extreme example. It’s fully electric, can travel over 700km on a single charge, and accelerates from 0-100km/h in just 4.5 seconds.

Haven’t heard of Zeekr? It’s a performance-oriented and fully electric sub-brand of Geely, a giant Chinese company who also owns Volvo, Polestar, Lotus, and half of Proton.

The 009 people mover is the brand’s second model, after the 001 coupe crossover which launched in the Chinese market in 2021.

Both cars sit on the SEA1 platform which is the Chinese spin-off of the same electric platform set to underpin the Polestar 3 and Volvo EX90.

To achieve its impressive driving range, the Zeekr 009 has the choice of two enormous battery packs, either a 116kWh unit allowing a 702km range according to the CLTC cycle, or a 140kWh unit allowing an 822km range. The battery itself is sourced from CATL and uses the brand’s latest packaging technology for unrivalled energy density - said to be higher than that of Tesla’s 4680 battery pack.

The new king of China's people mover craze? The new king of China's people mover craze?

Fulfilling the performance promise of the Zeekr brand, the 009 has a dual-motor all-wheel-drive setup, producing a total output of 400kW/686Nm. This allows it a claimed 0-100km/h sprint time of a 4.5 seconds - for the record faster than the 1994 Renault Espace F1 which was powered by an actual Williams Formula 1 engine.

Inside is as luxurious as Chinese cars come, with the 009 sporting Nappa leather seats in a six-seat layout (two in each of its three rows), a 15.4-inch multimedia touchscreen up front with always-online connectivity, a 10.25-inch digital dash, and even a 15.6-inch flip-down television screen for rear passengers. Close observers will note the indicator and wiper stalks appear to be shared components with Volvo and Polestar.

Like most new-age Chinese offerings, the Zeekr 009 is screens galore on the inside. Like most new-age Chinese offerings, the Zeekr 009 is screens galore on the inside.

Wheels are in aerodynamic designs in either 19-inch form for the 116kWh variant, or 20 inch on the 140kWh variant.

The Zeekr 009 enters a busy people mover market in China, competing with the likes of the LDV Mifa 9, which will be the first fully electric people mover to arrive in Australia later in 2023.

The six-seat layout is more limousine than people mover. The six-seat layout is more limousine than people mover.

For comparison the Mifa 9’s electric variant sports a 90kWh battery with a driving range of 440km. It will arrive alongside combustion versions before the end of 2023. Pricing is yet to be announced.

Meanwhile, the Zeekr 009 costs from the equivalent of A$106,000 in its Chinese home market. While Geely has stayed hands-off with most export markets, letting its big-brand subsidiaries play overseas roles, it has just announced a partnership to bring its cars to Europe for the first time. It also has plans to launch its Lynk & Co division in Australia by 2025.