The front is a bit froggy.
But touches of light blue and two-tone paint create a nice design (Photo: Walla! System, Udi Etzion)
handsome, well-equipped, comfortable, more European than Chinese and a cheaper price tag even than the Koreans
We didn't like:
performance, expensive like all plug-ins
What is a luxury car?
Mercedes earned its name as the offspring of the first car, and years of technological achievements on the race tracks.
BMW did the last two, and Audi went through a 20-year process until it became from the 1980s a competitor to Opel to a legitimate competitor to Mercedes and BMW.
But we are in the age of coffee paste and heat and serve.
In 2010, China's Geely bought Volvo, invested billions in financing its necessary technological upgrade for the electric world, and then began to reap dividends by adopting these technologies for its own cars.
Link & Co is one of several luxury brands she has launched, and one that is intended for Western markets.
Its first model, named the Soulless 01, was designed in Sweden, uses the Volvo XC40 platform, but is made in China.
And that's how we got a shortcut to the luxury market: I prepared in advance.
The first Chinese woman we meet without human engineering quirks (photo: Walla! system, Udi Etzion)
handsome, with the use of blue color sections in the 20-inch rims and the nickel stripes in the window frames.
The driver's environment is somewhat reminiscent of Volvo's, and very modern but without the Chinese quirks we've seen in other models from the new automotive powerhouse.
A 12.7-inch touch screen protrudes from the dashboard and is used to operate the multimedia and climate control, and also a digital dashboard, measuring 12.7 inches as well, which opens up a wealth of display options, including a small navigation map when using Wise via Android Auto or Apple CarPlay.
What is even more striking compared to other Chinese women, even prestigious ones, is that there are no quirks and kinks in human engineering.
Everything feels very efficient and western, including thought of the small details.
Pressing the signal lever immediately brings up an image from the reverse cameras on the central multimedia screen, to get another angle on what's happening behind, and that you won't hurt anyone.
In the spirit of the times, the manufacturer prides itself on using recycled materials, such as fishing nets that have been turned into seats.
I wonder how many old fishing nets there are in the world to provide enough raw material for years to come.
Either way, the seats are comfortable and the front seating is high.
In the back, the seat is lower, just like in the XC40, and the seat will be more comfortable for two, with a third passenger suffering from a floor that is not completely flat.
There is an air conditioner outlet and USB sockets.
More in Walla!
The intriguing process of recycling metal packaging
In cooperation with the Tamir Recycling Corporation
The back seat is spacious, but surprisingly the floor is not flat (photo: Walla! system, Udi Etzion)
with a volume of 466 liters, large and useful, but under it, as in most electric cars and hybrids, there is no spare wheel.
The 01 comes in one high equipment level: light rims, panoramic sun window, electric driver's seat, electric tailgate and keyless entry and drive.
includes autonomous emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, blind spot warning, lane keeping and rear cross traffic warning.
However, there is no autonomous emergency braking for reverse either, which is becoming more and more common in luxury.
Good performance, but Peugeot and Kia plug-ins are stronger (photo: Walla! system, Audi Etzion)
Engine and performance:
The next Link & Co models that will arrive in Israel will already be electric, but the 01 is a plug-in: a hybrid with a large battery that enables driving for tens of kilometers on electricity.
The idea: daily driving without emissions, and long trips without range anxiety, and still with a hybrid car.
Here there is a 1,500 cc gasoline engine and an electric motor that together produce 261 hp, and are mated to a dual-clutch, 7-speed robotic gearbox.
front wheel drive.
The performance is good, but there is no blow on the back during acceleration.
8 seconds from 0 to 100 km/h is a figure that is already seen in much more popular vehicles, and the use of the additional electric power for the benefit of the performance is not felt. The operation of the gear lever is not comfortable, even in the manual mode and even in a normal transfer from parking to drive. It is also a shame that there is no possibility of manual control On the charging rate of the electric battery, except for moving the gear lever to the braking position, as in the Toyota Prius 2005.
Fuel consumption and charging:
The electric battery is relatively large, 17.6 kWh, and the promise is for 75 electric kilometers.
At city speeds this is possible, but outside the city the gasoline engine started after only 62 km of driving at 110 km/h.
Charging at a home station takes two and a half hours, so if you can charge both at home and at the office, you can run almost entirely electrically even if you live in Jerusalem or Ashkelon and travel to Tel Aviv every day.
After the battery runs out, the fuel consumption starts to decrease.
After 150 km we were still averaging 25 km per liter, but after 250 we were already down to 15 kml.
Comfort and road behavior:
the 01 received a relatively soft suspension calibration. The gain is generally good ride comfort, as long as You didn't come across a wavy road that would shake it a bit. The ride is quiet and the noise insulation is good.
The road behavior is safe. High road grip but no sporty expression.
Good value for money, but only if you really charge (Photo: Walla! system, Udi Etzion)
The bottom line:
the 01 now costs NIS 230,000, after most of the stock arrived and was cleared from customs before the purchase tax on plug-in vehicles was raised on January 1.
This means that the next stock that arrives will be more expensive.
It is also possible to get it from the importer in private leasing, starting from NIS 4,250 per month and an advance of NIS 15,000, including insurance and treatments.
Is NIS 230,000 an expensive or cheap price?
This brings us back to the question from the opening.
A similar Volvo XC40 costs NIS 50,000 more, offers a bit more character, better performance but a shorter electric range.
Kia Sportage and Peugeot 3008 plug-in are NIS 20,000 more expensive.
Kia Niro plug-in, with less equipment, range and performance, costs NIS 180,000.
In terms of design, equipment and quality, the 01 deserves to be included in the world of luxury.
In terms of performance, comfort and road behavior not yet.
If you're looking for a fancy plug-in crossover it offers good value for money.
But the use of two propulsion systems, hybrid and electric, has an economic price.
And when more and more successful electric Jeeps are coming to the market at similar prices, from the Hyundai Ioniq 5, Kia EV6, Skoda Aniac to the Tesla Model Y which was recently reduced to NIS 270,000, there is a prominent question mark surrounding the purchase of the large plug-in vehicles.
On the technical side: Link and Line 01
gasoline-electric, rechargeable, front
power (hp) / torque (kgm):
robotic, double clutch 7 gears
Acceleration 0-100 (seconds):
Maximum speed (km/h):
Consumption Fuel (manufacturer):
100 km per liter
Fuel consumption (test):
15 km per liter
panoramic sun window, recycled seat upholstery, electric driver's seat
European crash test score: 5 out of 5
autonomous emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, vehicle detection in "dead zone", cross traffic alert, traffic sign detection, automatic high beam
27 grams of CO2 per km, pollution group 1 of 15
4 years or 100,000 km, 8 years or 150,000 km for the battery
Toyota Rav4 Plug-in, Kia Sportage Plug-in