Polestar: The Need for Swede.
The North Star, also known as the Pole Star, is one of the brightest lights in the night sky and explorers have used it to guide their adventures for centuries. In much the same way, Volvo is using their performance arm, Polestar, to guide them into a fully electric, high-performance future.
Polestar shares expertise with the Volvo Car Group but also functions as an innovation lab and testbed for experimental designs and performance parts for the new age of electric mobility about to be unleashed for the first time here in Canada.
The Polestar 1 is a plug-in, high-performance hybrid dripping with presence, stance, and Scandinavian style. Two electric rear-wheel motors work alongside a supercharged, turbocharged engine to generate 600 hp and a torque of 737 lb.-ft. Onboard the Polestar 1, the engineers included a number of distinctly Scandinavian design features such as the 8-speed gearbox handcrafted from genuine solid crystal by Swedish artisan glass. Its most unique aspect is the Polestar symbol reflected in the fixed panoramic glass roof that stretches the length and width of the car, like a star in the sky. One of the few visible links to Volvo Cars present in the Polestar 1 is the phrase “Since 1959” engraved on the seat belt buckle. This is a subtle nod to recognize the three-point safety belt as a Volvo invention.
The Polestar 2 is a fully electric five-door fastback with over 470 kilometres in range. Designed to be an exceptionally quiet car, even for electric models, the interior is like a library. If a library could reach 100 km/h in less than 5 seconds. A marvel of carbon fibre engineering, the Polestar 2 is nimble and yet optimally balanced for safe driving and maximum handling pleasure. The Polestar symbol is illuminated on the panoramic glass roof to match the Polestar 1.
Volvo Cars is committed to becoming climate neutral across their full value chain by 2040 and Polestar is the perfect start to that ambitious goal. For example, the base material of the seats is comprised of 100% recycled yarn derived from discarded plastic bottles. Known as WeaveTech, this modern PVC material is inspired by divers’ wetsuits and is a vegan and earth-friendly alternative to traditional leather seating.
A 7-metre AC charging cord for normal outlets comes standard, while an optional 4.5-metre DC cord for wall boxes offers faster charging. Additional cable and home charging solutions are also available. For the majority of drivers, the cheapest alternative will be to charge at home, resulting in a cost of around 3.55 US cents per kilometer.
Drivers can easily interact with their vehicles, thanks to a wealth of innovative features including touch screen display, driver assist systems and voice control. Keyless entry is also available via Digital Key which makes the driver’s phone the authentication device. By connecting to the car via the Polestar Connect app, the car recognizes your phone and adapts by implementing your preferred seat position and display home screen.
Buying for tomorrow
Polestar is also taking a new approach to market with subscription as the primary offer. The cars will be offered as an all-inclusive single monthly payment, aiming to redefine the owner experience. The monthly fee will include everything from maintenance, insurance and roadside assistance to pick-up and delivery services. All orders and transactions will be completed online but will be complemented by stand-alone retail spaces around the world.
These two new icons of electric mobility represent Volvo’s mandate for the coming years. They have pledged to transition 50% of Volvo’s lineup to be pure electric and the other 50% to be hybrid by 2025. Both Polestar models start production in the first quarter of 2021, with deliveries beginning that summer, but can be configured online now at www.polestar.com.