At a test drive for the new 2018 Bo Yue (X7 Sport), I spotted the familiar face of a fellow from Anhui, the same home province as me. He’s Song Jun, one of Geely Auto sales company’s deputy general managers. These past few years, Mr. Song has certainly been busy taking the lead in making the Bo Yue one of China’s best-selling models, turning it into a true “Superstar” product. But today, he casually mentions to me that now his new goal is to turn this “Superstar” into a “Classic.”
In his own words, Mr. Song said “Looking at the global automotive market, every world-renowned auto brand are known for specific models. Volkswagen with Beetle and Golf, Toyota with Camry and Corolla, Honda with Civic and Accord, Ford with the Focus, etc. These models are known throughout the world and raises brand awareness for their companies.”
Whether you’re a person or a company, you must do or make something great to be known to the world. A movie star is nobody until they have a good movie, a writer is not known until they publish something widely read, and an internet star does not exist until they go viral. It’s the same for a car brand, we must have a key product that reflects the level of our brand.
With over half a million units sold in just over two years since its launch, the Bo Yue is starting to look like a classic Geely hit. That’s over 600 cars sold per day or around one every 2.4 minutes. But for Mr. Song, this is not enough, he added “there’s still a lot of hard work for us to do in order to make this a classic. We need to continuously improve in order to meet the consumers’ increasingly sophisticated demands.”
Understandable. For a car to become a breakout hit, it must meet the core needs of the consumers at the time. But to become a classic, it is also necessary to “optimize and update itself to meet the users ever changing needs and demands.” In the case of the Bo Yue, this can be seen in the inclusion of the GKUI Geely Smart Ecosystem in the new 2018 models.
When the Bo Yue was first launched in 2016, it won the hearts of the consumers with its three “good” qualities, “good looks, good drive, and good technology.” Now with the 2018 facelift and inclusion of the GKUI, it has the added qualities of “smart connectivity, smart safety, and smart comfort” making it the leading Smart Connected SUV in China.
Geely has always kept our ears close to the ground. We listen to our users carefully and study the core needs of the market. The future of the automotive industry is intelligent, connected, and electrified. Through the Bo Yue, we are leading the development of intelligent connectivity and in the future Geely will be smart and electrified.
Looking back at the development of Chinese brands in the past, some brands came out with very good products, but they forget how quickly consumer demands change and good products become obsolete products. Some brands know consumer demand will change, but they’re not good at guessing the direction of those changes. Others know the changes that are coming and know what they need to do to adapt, but they do not dedicate the resources to meeting that change and ultimately get left behind.
The success that Geely has found in the past few years has shown that it has a clear grasp on what the market demands. They seem to know exactly when to build and what to build. They’re not afraid to spend money and take risks. Based on this, I believe that the Bo Yue will definitely become a Geely classic.