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Electric five-door coupe hints at next Volvo V40

Polestar 2 Fastback (20 on) - rated 0 out of 5
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PROS

  • Chinese-built Tesla Model 3 with hatchback practicality
  • Two electric motors produce 408hp
  • Claimed 310-mile range; priced from £34k

CONS

  • Early models will cost significantly more
  • No details yet of recharging times

PROS

  • Chinese-built Tesla Model 3 with hatchback practicality
  • Two electric motors produce 408hp
  • Claimed 310-mile range; priced from £34k

CONS

  • Early models will cost significantly more
  • No details yet of recharging times

Verdict

Set to make its debut at the 2019 Geneva motor show, this is the Polestar 2, a fully electric five-door fastback that could be plugged-in and parked on your driveway in early 2020. Suddenly the Tesla Model 3 has competition.

Polestar – isn’t that a high-performance Volvo?

Yes. And no. That’s certainly how things started off, but Polestar is now a standalone electrified brand that, like Volvo, is owned by Geely. Polestar has already launched its first model, the 1 – a luxurious, plug-in hybrid two-door coupe based on the Volvo S90 – but the smaller 2 is its debut pure-electric model.

Polestar 2 Fastback side profile

Performance fans needn’t worry, though, because the sole version of the Polestar 2 announced so far is far from slow, courtesy of a pair of electric motors sending power to all four wheels. Producing 408hp and 660Nm of torque, a 0-62mph time of ‘less than five seconds’ suggests it will trouble many a traditional sports car. No top speed has yet been quoted, but expect it to be capped at a modest figure in order to preserve battery reserves.

Recognising that electric car buyers aren’t simply choosing to ditch petrol and diesel engines purely for environmental reasons, Polestar will offer the 2 a Performance Pack that includes stiffened Ohlins dampers for the suspension, larger Brembo brakes, 20-inch alloy wheels and gold-coloured accents.

Sounds quick, but how far will the Polestar 2 go between charges?

Again, so far we only have details of this single version of the Polestar 2, but that’s not stopped a bullish claim of around 310 miles of range from being claimed. Although the precise figure in the real-world will be determined by a number of factors, including driving style, it suggests that a 250-mile range should be easily attainable.

Its 27-module battery pack, which is located within the floor of the Polestar 2’s architecture, has a capacity of 78kWh. Polestar hasn’t confirmed any recharge times yet, but that volume of battery capacity is likely to take around 10 hours for a full cycle on a conventional domestic wallbox, but will be significantly quicker using the growing network of rapid chargers.

Polestar 2 Fastback front three-quarter

Polestar will make locating these public chargepoints even easier with an in-car and smartphone app that will be linked to the sat-nav system, plotting the most efficient route to the facilities.

Is the Polestar 2 based on an existing car?

Given the spirally cost of developing new cars, particularly electrical ones, inevitably efficiencies have to be made, particularly where the parts involved aren’t going to be seen. Therefore, like many cars, the Polestar 2 uses the same underpinnings as the Volvo XC40 SUV, a model that will also become available in electric guises in the near future.

More than that, we expect the nose and side profile of the Polestar 2 to look very close to the next-generation Volvo V40, although that car will likely feature a shorter rear-end, much like the soon-to-be-replaced model.

Interiors are also likely to be broadly similar between the Polestar 2 and the next V40, with the dashboard highlighting an evolution of the existing Volvo theme. That floating-style multimedia touchscreen is 11 inches diagonally and uses Google’s Android platform as its operating system.

Polestar 2 Fastback dashboard

How much will the Polestar 2 cost?

Although there will be a number of Polestar Spaces where would-be buyers can browse the cars and arrange test drives, the ordering will be online, with a suggested starting price of €39,900 (around £34,100 at the pre-Brexit time of publication). Leasing rates will be revealed at a later date.

However, the first year’s production will be exclusively devoted to the high-spec Launch Edition, with an indicated price of €59,900 (approximately £51,200). Although order books will open in 2019, production in China won’t begin until early 2020, meaning it is likely to be spring at the earliest before the first deliveries occur.

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Polestar 2 Fastback rear three-quarter

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