The proof of Lynk and Co 01, the car you can rent and sublet

The proof of Lynk and Co 01, the car you can rent and sublet

The proof of Lynk and Co 01

The possibility of having an electric or hybrid car available for a month, for a lifetime or even just for the time necessary to go shopping: here is the proposal of a brand new car manufacturer

In a frenetic Milan still busy in Design week, about to start its Art week and with our head already in Fashion week, we tested 01, the first model of Lynk & Co, the Sino-Swedish car manufacturer of the Geely group (owner of Volvo) which prefers to define itself as a mobility brand. We will understand why.

Two versions on tap

Currently the 01 is available in the full hybrid or plug-in hybrid version, the one tested by Wired. The 01 under test has front-wheel drive, 20-inch rims and a 17.6 kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery. The direct injection petrol engine is 1.5 liters. It offers 180 horsepower for 265 Newton meter of torque. Added to it is a 60 kilowatt electric motor for 160 Newton meter of torque. Data that allows the sport utility, born on the same platform as the Volvo XC40, to cover the 0-100 deadlift in 8 seconds flat. The maximum speed instead reaches 210 kilometers per hour. Its consumption - in perfect conditions - can reach 1.2 liters per 100 kilometers with the battery charged.

Given, however, that we could not find on the large color digital cockpit. The declared full electric range, on the other hand, touches 70 WLTP kilometers which can be extended to more than 80 in a completely urban cycle. Given the recovery under braking and the kilometers traveled in the test drive, these figures seem to be very close to reality. To make the most of the features of the hybrid powertrain, the 01 has three driving modes: Pure, Power, Hybrid. The first benefits fully electric driving. The second is exclusively petrol, while the third is a mix of the contribution of the two engines depending on how much thrust is required by those behind the wheel. On the other hand, there is no possibility of regenerating the battery while running using the combustion engine.

The tunnel console with the 7-speed automatic transmission As promised by Lynk & Co, the new 01 lacks nothing to enter among the premium sport utilities, if not fame. The exteriors are characterized by a large grille that runs along the entire front. On the sides, large air intakes and on the top to give shape to the bonnet the LED headlights. The lateral line is enriched with four blisters for a more off-road footprint. Above, the two handrails accompany the roof which ends in the inevitable spoiler. Finally, the rear is characterized by the horizontal luminous signature of the stops, the large Lynk & Co writing and the double terminals closing the extractor.

The premium interiors

The interiors look well finished and very bright thanks to the large panoramic roof. The presence of plastics is predominant, but the different response to touch and sight still makes the entire passenger compartment valuable. The seats are upholstered in Econyl, the artificial fiber obtained from the recycling of fishing nets recovered from the sea by voluntary associations. The front ones give a high driving position. Electrified for better driving comfort, they are also electrically heated for the winter. The seats are anatomical and wrap the body well without forcing it too much. Ditto for the rear ones which, among other things, are positioned far from the front ones to leave more room for the legs. There is a good mix of physical and digital keys. The important ones, such as the Drive Mode, the temperature selector, the intensity of the air from the vents and, trivially, the sound are easily accessible even by the passenger. The positioning of the smartphone for induction charging is also convenient.

The steering wheel is in stitched leather: small, sporty with the lower and upper part more flattened. It has three spokes: in the two horizontal ones there are the luminous touch keys of the infotainment and management of the 12.3-inch cockpit layout, including car information such as fuel consumption, distance traveled and map. The dual-zone air conditioner puts two large knobs for managing the temperature and intensity of the air within reach of those who sit in front of it. The central display, the access door to the infotainment, is instead 12.7 inches. Connectivity at the highest levels both internally, with Apple Car Play and Android Auto, and externally with OTA (over the air) updates. At the end, the numerous assisted driving functions guarantee a safe and comfortable ride.

Driving sensations

The first sensations behind the wheel of Lynk & Co 01 are positive. In the center of Milan, where scooters, scooters, bicycles and any other strange vehicle touch you continuously, the sensors prove to be always reactive, but never invasive. The maneuverability thanks to the wide turning radius is interesting and makes this compact sport utility agile even in small spaces. The navigator is responsive in case you change route by mistake and can be seen very well both on the central display and from the cockpit. The suspension is as soft as it happens in many sport utilities. However, this involves a certain roll, especially in fast roundabouts or when changing direction. In its transverse axis, however, the machine is composed. The pitch is noticeable only in important braking. Almost nothing under acceleration or in normal urban progress.

Unless there is a lot of sprint starts in Combustion Power mode, the car always starts in Pure electric and then continues in Hybrid. The automatic transmission is fast. Too bad, however, the absence of the two paddles behind the steering wheel for changing gears; useful if you want to have fun on mixed routes with the sequential gearbox. In the city, then, to use the brakes as little as possible and optimize energy recovery, 01 by Lynk & Co has driving mode B (Brake) which increases the electrical resistance of the engine when decelerating. This amplifies the engine brake effect, reducing the speed, and increases the intensity of energy recovery.

Lynk & Co 01 in the blue variant

No properties, yes use

Included in the monthly membership of 500 euros it is possible to travel 1250 kilometers per month. Beyond this threshold there is a cost of 0.15 cents for each additional kilometer. However, the additional cost is calculated in the final balance. For example, if you keep the car for three months, at the end of the third month you are asked to pay for the extra kilometers used during the three months. Furthermore, the unused kilometers are automatically loaded into the following month and so on accumulating more and more unused kilometers over the course of the rental months.

Today, when you rent a car for one or more months, it is delivered new and will always be the same during the rental, unless there is a problem. In this case Lynk & Co withdraws it to fix it or is exchanged for another. In the future it will certainly happen, precisely to avoid the continuous circulation of new machines on the market, that the machine for monthly rental has already been used by other members in the past. But Lynk & Co guarantees that it will be in perfect working order, while maintaining its performance and appearance. In addition, those who rent 01 monthly can in turn make the car available to other members of the community, in practice by sub-letting it. He decides for how long and at what rate. Lynk & Co takes care of everything: consumption details, insurance, infringements and accidents.

Who is it for

Already from the 01 press release, a little lack of technical information on 'car, we understand how Lynk & Co aims much more to shed light on its mobile platform than the car. The goal of the Sino-Swedish company, in fact, is to create a community of people who will rent its cars. Currently in Italy, without a car in circulation yet, we are already 4000 registered. Not surprisingly, David Green, cto of Lynk & Co, interviewed before the test-drive, explicitly stated their diversity: “We try to satisfy the needs of those people who are looking for something that they have not yet found in car manufacturers. Our target audience is not people who focus only on the car itself, but on what the car brings to their life, to their freedom of mobility ".

Lynk & Co through 01 has searched to eliminate any annoyance or fear by bringing it on a par with a company car. Everything is included in the rental of 500 euros per month: options, road tax, insurance and maintenance. You just have to choose between blue or black and between plug-i n or full hybrid. All this pushes the typical 01 customer not to have a definite age or generation.

Lynk & Co installation during Design Week at City Life Park Thanks to Link & Co, a family can have a beautiful car at a fixed monthly rate and, if you wish, you can share it with the student who lives in the same building and thus reduce costs. Link & Co is like Airbnb for the automotive category. This long period of lockdown, according to Lynk & Co, has shown people that they need something else other than owning the car. It allowed people to rethink what their real priorities were in life. Where do you really want to spend your money.

But you can also buy

The 01, with its 454 centimeters in length and its equipment, can aspire to compete with the best sellers Audi Q3 and Bmw X1, or the sister Volvo XC40. The 01 is the first model launched on the European market by Lynk & Co and, as mentioned, you can choose between the plug-in hybrid (PHEV) or electric full hybrid (HEV) version. For those wishing to buy it, the price list stops at 35,000 euros for the hybrid version or 40,700 euros for the plug-in hybrid. It is (almost) all inclusive. Available colors are black and blue.

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