Polestar, the electric performance car spinoff of Volvo, announced its first standalone automobile and it is a beauty. There is also plenty of brawn to go along with the luxurious styling. The Polestar 1, as it is appropriated dubbed, harnesses 600 horses underneath the hood. It will go into production sometime around the middle of 2019, at a new purpose-built production facility in China.
"Polestar 1 is the first car to carry the Polestar on the bonnet. A beautiful GT with amazing technology packed into it—a great start for our new Polestar 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," said Thomas Ingenlath, chief executive officer of Polestar.
The Polestar 1 is a two-door Grand Tourer (GT) sedan with 2x2 seating inside. While future versions will feature fully electric drivetrains, the Polestar 1 is a hybrid electric vehicle (EV) that is supported by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder combustion engine powering the front wheels and banging out 382 HP. The remaining power comes from a starter engine and a pair of electric motors, one for each rear wheel, that combine for another 218 HP.
Torque checks in at a ludicrous 737 lb-ft, which should give the Polestar 1 plenty of grunt off the line. Polestar also says it's first vehicle has a range of 150 kilometers (90 miles) on electric power alone, giving it the longest full electric range of any hybrid car to date. That is also within striking distance of some all-electric cars.
The exterior styling is both sporty and aggressive. One could be forgiven for mistaking the Polestar 1 for a Mustang when viewed from across the parking the lot. Upon closer examination, it is obviously a different beast, and one that does not go too over the top with its design.
Polestar opted for a carbon fiber body to make the Polestar 1 lighter, while also improve torsional stiffness by 45 percent. In addition, Polestar says the Polestar 1 is the first car in the world to be fitted with an all-new Öhlins Continuously Controlled Electric Suspension (CESi) advanced chassis technology.
The Polestar 1 is the first of three new vehicles Polestar announced this week. Production of the Polestar 2, which will be a fully electric vehicle, will start later in 2019. It will be a mid-sized EV that is designed to go up against Tesla's highly hyped Model 3, and will be produced in higher volume than the Polestar 1. Meanwhile, Polestar 3 is planned to be a larger SUV-style EV.