STOCKHOLM - Geely-owned automaker Volvo Cars will make its Polestar Performance business a standalone brand within the group, focusing on electric cars, the company said on Wednesday.

The company said Polestar would become "a new separately-branded electrified global high performance car company."

Polestar, bought by Volvo in 2015, will produce own-brand vehicles while continuing to deliver high-performance upgrades to Volvo vehicles.

Thomas Ingenlath, who as senior vice president of design has been the man behind Volvo's recent clean and beautiful new designs, will be Polestar's CEO. Jonathan Goodman, Volvo's senior VP of communications, will be Polestar's chief operating officer.

Autoblog spoke with Ingenlath and North America CEO Lex Kerssemakers at the Geneva Auto Show in March, where they spoke of Volvo's future on many fronts, including Polestar's move into EVs and hybrids.

Said Ingenlath in Wednesday's announcement: "I am really excited to take up the challenge of establishing this exciting brand, developing a fabulous portfolio of bespoke products and channelling the passion we have throughout the Polestar team. The next chapter in Polestar's history is just beginning."

The new offering will be mainly electric vehicles, aimed at competing with Tesla and the Mercedes AMG division on battery supercars. "Polestar will be a credible competitor in the emerging global market for high-performance electrified cars," Volvo's announcement said.

Major markets are likely to include China and the United States.

Reporting by Anna Ringstrom, with additional material from Autoblog.

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