Zeekr X: our first test drive in Stockholm

In Stockholm, I had the chance to test the Zeekr X, a compact and concrete car designed specifically for the European market. We got a sneak peek, and here’s how it went.

In Scandinavia, Zeekr X is now available only in Sweden, but the company will open commercial activities also in Denmark and Norway in 2024.

Zeekr X: tops & flops

The Zeekr X is a compact premium car with a highly sought-after European design. It’s crafted and designed in Gothenburg, Sweden, similar to the 001 and its close siblings under the Lynk & Co brand, with which Zeekr shares both its logo and origin. With its intricate lines deviating from the typical Scandinavian minimalism and its distinctive shape, the Zeekr X certainly stands out. It’s well-suited for city driving, offering a comfortable yet performance-oriented ride with a maximum configuration of 428 horsepower. The car is now available in Sweden starting from 550.000 SEK for the Long Range RWD version, up to 595.000 SEK for the Privilege AWD version we drove.

What we like:

  • Technological design;
  • Interior’s high quality;
  • Very good acceleration;

What we don’t like;

  • ADAS alerts are very noisy!
  • The suspension tends to bounce a bit;
  • Everything has to be controlled from the central touchscreen.

Distinctive Design of the Zeekr X

I showed pictures of the Zeekr X to some friends, and they all agreed that it manages to distinguish itself, especially due to its unique shapes. It represents a stylistic evolution from the shooting brake, originating from the Lynk & Co concept car “The Next Day,” with the X being the first production vehicle to incorporate the design innovations also found in Lynk & Co 08 and the restyled Lynk & Co 06.

Zeekr X
Image: NordiskBil

The car’s design is soft and dynamic, with a pronounced front featuring two slender LED daytime running lights and main headlights concealed in the glossy black faux grille. These simple yet impactful elements leave the front looking clean, complemented by the play of light created by the slightly curved hood.

The rear is certainly more distinctive, with a small and vertical rear window, a curved tailgate, and unique headlights that form a single complex unit separating the two aforementioned elements. It also includes some charming details, such as retractable door handles that “sink” into the body when the car is opened.

Zeekr X
Image: NordiskBil

Additionally, there’s a mini display on the central pillar showing the charging status, alerts about the connector being removed, and various features like the “Do Not Disturb” mode or the Pet Mode. The latter creates the ideal environment for dogs and cats when left in the car, notifying externally that the pet hasn’t been forgotten.

In terms of size, it’s a compact car but not small. It is built on the Geely group’s SEA architecture in its compact version. This makes it closely related to the Volvo EX30 and especially the Smart #1, with the latter sharing its powertrains. However, compared to both, it’s larger, reaching a length of 4.44 meters compared to Volvo’s 4.2 meters and Smart’s 4.3 meters.

Zeekr X
Image: NordiskBil

This results in ample interior space, as we’ll see, and a sufficient trunk with a minimum capacity of 362 liters. It deviates from the norm with wide-profile tires, making the 19” base wheels and the 20” wheels on the Privilege version appear smaller.

Excellent Interiors

What is particularly appreciated is the sense of quality experienced when stepping into the Zeekr X. Everything is finely finished, covered in well-sewn and well-fitted materials, whether in black or white according to preferences. Despite the cut rear windows, reminiscent of the XC40 style, there’s no feeling of claustrophobia, thanks to the large fixed glass panoramic roof, which, together with the light colors, enhances the airiness and brightness of the cabin.

Zeekr X
Image: NordiskBil

White interiors are my favorite, even though they are certainly more prone to getting dirty. Alternating with the white are blue plastic elements, also well-assembled though not flawless, found on the rear of the seats, lower part of the door panels and dashboard, as well as on the outer frame of the steering wheel.

Then there’s the rose gold element that embellishes everything, with finishes around the headrests, buttons, and hangers, as well as chromed elements at the rear. On the door panels, the stitching resembles a skyline of skyscrapers that illuminates along with the ambient lights and the Yamaha audio system speakers.

Zeekr X
Image: NordiskBil

Practicality is not overlooked, with a convenient smartphone compartment on the central tunnel or, next to the driver, what is a handle for the front passenger turns into a glasses holder. All covered, like the headliner, in excellent fabric.

Technology reigns supreme. Behind the steering wheel, a small display is incorporated, while in the center, there’s a 14.6” tablet. Everything is controlled from here, including adjusting the side mirrors, albeit a less practical solution. But apart from this, the system is fluid, updateable wirelessly, and has a clear and clean interface.

Zeekr X
Image: NordiskBil

It’s not Android like Volvo and Polestar, but there are pre-installed apps like Spotify. Moreover, the car is customizable and allows for “playing” amusing things like animal sounds or a fake engine, audible from the outside. A quirky but certainly original solution.

Quick, Yet Comfortable with a Bit of Bounce

The Privilege version in our test is the most powerful: 428 horsepower from two electric motors, 0-100 in 3.8 seconds, and a nominal 69 kWh battery for a range of 425 km. The single-motor version drops to 271 horsepower, but the range increases to 440 km.

Zeekr X
Image: NordiskBil

The car, despite its power, has a very gentle approach, evident in the suspension, which doesn’t change even when switching from Comfort to Dynamic, the two provided driving modes. This means that the suspensions are not electronically controlled and are designed to be soft.

Zeekr X
Image: NordiskBil

In general, this is appreciated, but sometimes they are too soft: on small bumps, it’s noticeable because it creates a slight too bouncy “boat effect” that can be tiring over time. It should be noted, however, that I tested a pre-production model, and the feedback provided was meant for Zeekr to improve some aspects. Hopefully, including this one.

Zeekr X
Image: NordiskBil

Apart from this, there’s good sound insulation for the category, and you only hear a few aerodynamic rustlings and tire noises. There’s also decent forward visibility thanks to the wide windshield. The vertical rear window aids in perceiving proportions, but it remains relatively small. The 360-degree system and sensors are excellent aids, and there’s even a 3D polygon that replicates the car to help even more during maneuvers. The steering, on the other hand, is good, maintaining the soft approach mentioned earlier. Still, thanks to the aesthetically pleasing and ergonomic steering wheel, the driving experience is made very enjoyable and comfortable.

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