Polestar 2 - Rivervale Review
Lauded as one of the best electric cars money can buy, this blog explores what’s so great about the Polestar 2, the second model from the new and exciting Polestar brand.
Tesla had already persuaded most car aficionados that you don't have to sacrifice luxury, performance, comfort and style just by the nature of opting for an environmentally friendly Electric Vehicle (EV). So how to innovate on top of Tesla’s innovation? Polestar makes it look effortless.
The Polestar 2 offers those low emissions that we are all moving towards, whether excitedly or begrudgingly (especially with the government’s ‘Road to Zero’ plans intending to reward low-emissions drivers and provide punitive fiscal measures for high emitters). But it’s not only eco-friendliness that this car has to offer. It’s also a great drive - exciting, intuitive and innovative, and it offers superb build quality.
This is a new electric vehicle, from a new EV manufacturer. Once allied to the after-hours petrol-heads at Volvo racing, Polestar is now standing alone as a beacon of sustainability and rewriting the car driving (and purchasing) process ground-up. Jointly owned by Volvo and Chinese brand Geely, and manufactured in China, the Polestar brand creates the coolest electric vehicles everybody wants to own and makes them intuitive and effortless to drive.
Model: Polestar 2
Whilst the Polestar 1 was a plug-in hybrid, the Polestar 2 truly sets the pace of what Polestar wants to achieve on the EV scene, as a fully electric vehicle.
The Polestar is so unconventional that it doesn’t even conform to a standard car design type. The Polestar 2 is part Crossover, part Saloon; a slightly raised fastback, in a category all of its own.
Available from August 2020, the Polestar 2 enjoys a 78kWh battery pack, and electric motors on both front and rear axles. Despite its weight (2.1 tonnes), the 2 is zippy. There are plans for a two-wheel-drive version too (the current Polestar 2 develops more than 400bhp split 50/50), which would make the model more economical - it currently sits at a starting price of £49,900.
Novelty, that works
That extra height in the body isn’t just great for a commanding road view with excellent visibility; Polestar lodges the water-cooled battery pack beneath the cabin too in this model. It’ll get you a range of 292 miles with the Performance Pack option. Volvo claims a mammoth almost 350 miles, if used urban-only. The Polestar manages 0-62mph in 4.7 seconds, and a top speed of 127mph.
As with all EVs, the Polestar offers that thrilling acceleration when you depress the accelerator - an immediacy that no petrol or diesel engine can match. Polestar ups the ante, though, delivering this feather-light acceleration in a model that weighs almost as much as a Range Rover.
Nothing unnecessary adorns the cabin in the Polestar - no unnecessary gadgets and gizmos. It’s all hyper-designed clean lines and crisp, fresh design purpose. It’s Scandi style summed up - with decisions that showcase utility and simplicity.
Just jump in (with keyless entry), depress the brake, and your Polestar 2 car springs to life. The shared platform with the family-friendly Volvo XC40 SUV means that the Polestar 2 is large and safe, with Volvo-style surround-view cameras as another bonus when it’s time to park up. That’s where Volvo similarities pretty much end, however, as the Polestar’s interior is hitting for a different ballpark.
The central touchscreen measures eleven inches across and sits high enough to stay in your sightline throughout your drive. Its display is clean and sharp, quick to respond, and uses Google OS - ironing out all those display wait-times and in-car niggles that traditionally plague in-car touchscreen infotainment technology.
Google OS means that it also has the voice assistant ‘Hey Google’, making for easy answers whilst driving, and once signed in to your Google account you can personalise settings, play from your own Spotify playlists, and take advantage of the built-in Google Maps system.
Another display sits in front of the driver’s seat, illustrating your speed and range data as well as a widescreen map with ease and sense.
Light wood and fabric make for a commercial, business-friendly car that neither shows off with sportiness nor looks austere. It’s calm, welcoming, and luxurious. The interior is vegan as standard.
When you’re done with driving, just select ‘Park’ and jump out. Your Polestar 2 will put itself right back to sleep again.
The Polestar 2 can easily transport adults in the rear as well as the front, and the boot capacity is a respectable 405 litres.
In conclusion, the Polestar 2 looks like a model for the future. This is one to watch, and a brand that is already giving established EV producer Tesla a run for their money.
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