In June, Volvo Cars has announced that Polestar, its performance car arm, will become a separately-branded electrified global high performance car company. On Thursday, the new Polestar revealed its future as a standalone electric performance brand. It confirmed plans for its first three models, a new purpose-built production facility in China and a customer-focused route to market that, it says, will set an industry benchmark for performance vehicles. Polestar unveiled the 600bhp Polestar 1, its first car, which is set to roll off the production line in mid-2019. “Polestar’s technology and product offering benefits from synergies and economies of scale enabled by the Volvo Car Group, helping Polestar to accelerate design, development and production processes at a fraction of the time it takes for other new entrants,” the company said in a statement. Thomas Ingenlath, CEO of Polestar, added, “Polestar 1 is the first car to carry the Polestar on the bonnet.
A beautiful GT with amazing technology packed into it, it is a great start for our new brand. All future cars from Polestar will feature a fully electric drivetrain, delivering on our brand vision of being the new standalone electric performance brand.” Polestar 1 is a two-door, 2+2 seat Grand Tourer Coupé with an ‘Electric Performance Hybrid’ drivetrain. An electric car supported by an internal combustion engine, it has a range of 150km on pure electric power alone—the longest full electric range of any hybrid car in the market. Its power output of 600bhp and 1,000Nm of torque places the car firmly in the performance segment.
Polestar 1 is based on Volvo’s Scalable Platform Architecture (SPA) but approximately 50% is new and bespoke, created by Polestar’s engineers. It is also the world’s first car to be fitted with the Öhlins Continuously Controlled Electronic Suspension (CESi) advanced chassis technology. A carbon fibre body reduces bodyweight and improves torsional stiffness by 45%, as well as lowering the car’s centre of gravity. Additionally, it uses a double electric rear axle that enables torque vectoring. This supports the driver with precise acceleration on each wheel to keep the maximum road grip and maintain speed while cornering.
It will be built at the Polestar Production Centre in Chengdu, China. Currently under construction, the facility is due for completion in mid-2018. Polestar will also move away from today’s traditional ownership model. Cars will be ordered 100% online and offered on a two- or three-year subscription basis. The zero-deposit, all-inclusive subscription will also add features such as pick-up and delivery servicing and the ability to rent alternative vehicles within the Volvo and Polestar range, all incorporated into one monthly payment.
All future cars from Polestar will have a fully electric powertrain. Polestar 2 will start production later in 2019 and will be the first battery-electric vehicle (BEV) from the Volvo Car Group. It will be a mid-sized BEV, joining the competition around Tesla Model 3, and with consequently higher volumes than Polestar 1. The initial phase of the Polestar product roll out will then be completed by the larger SUV-style BEV—Polestar 3. As of now, the company has not announced whether Polestar 1 will come to India or not.