Polestar 2 - Twice as good

Polestar 2 – Twice as good

Swedish design meets Google high tech

Polestar was the Volvo car’s racing and tuning brand.  Polestar being derived from the Pole Star, the North Star, the brightest star at the North Pole, a guiding light.


In what was a shock to established car makers, Chinese Co. Geely acquired Volvo and the Polestar brand from Ford in 2010. 

Since then, the Polestar brand has been positioned as a dedicated EV brand, but still with roots from Volvo.  Polestar 2 is their second production EV, still based on a Volvo platform.  Here’s the Polestar 2 Australia price and details.


The Polestar 3, their first dedicated EV, has just been launched with Polestar 4 and 5 in the pipeline.

Polestar 2 - 2024 Model Year angle front

2024 model updates

Polestar 2 – 2024 Model Update.  Polestar just announced a 2024 update to the Polestar 2.  Lots of improvements, new motors (and single motor version is now rear wheel drive), faster charging, more power and longer range, and a slight face job. 

 

I was a bit fan of the old “grill” as a real feature, I’ll miss it as the revamp is getting the new Polestar 3 front treatment.

 

Plus, a few of the things we suggested below have been adopted in the 2024 update.

Smallest, but a great relief, wireless charging  had been added to the entry level models.  Also added as standard, Driver Awareness features such rear collision warning and Blind spot warnings. 

 

Most importantly perhaps, the single engine model has had it’s motor repositioned from the front (front wheel drive) to the rear (rear wheel drive) as standard.

 

The 2024 model is available to order now, plus still 2023 available to drive away now.

Finding Polestar

I just stumbled into Polestar Sydney, Euston Rd, Alexandria, not far from our HQ one afternoon.  They have moved from Euston Road, so now you can find them close by at Unit 13 /37 O’Riordan Street, Alexandria.  Cnr O’Riordan & Collins Streets.


It was a newly converted warehouse “space”, so is minimalist, very Polestar – nothing like the car dealerships of old, and the Polestar 2’s are sitting ready.

Several different models sat on a polished concrete floor, they looked good, the whole place looked post modern – it was a new car buying experience.


And I admit, I forced myself to like pictures of the  Polestar 2 design.  Initially, maybe too ICE car like, not enough future projection, maybe too Volvoish (previously not my favourite brand design) but when I saw it for the first time – I really, really liked it!

First Impressions from 2023

It’s handsome, boxy and aggressive.  Bigger than I thought, on the outside, smaller than I thought on the inside.  But back to that later.

 

The Front is all style, no function here.  The black grill lets in no air but I like it.  (changed for 2024 model, the grill in now colour coded). As with most EV’s the wheels are big, the various options are functional and ornamental and much closer to each corner than ICE cars.  This, combined with the shallow window glass, relative to the side door panels, gives the appearance of an aggressively lowered stance.

 

My Space Specialist was excellent.  Perhaps a little too on script but that’s not a bad thing.  I got all the information about the car, Packs, Spec’s, Colours etc. but I was quickly sitting inside the driver’s seat, and just as quickly signing up for a test drive.

Second Impressions

First time driving an EV, it’s a great choice to start.  It envelops you, reminds you of the interior of several other European cars.  Gives you a great feeling of comfort and quality.

 

Out of preference I was in the base model, with no added “Packs”.  My aim was to come under the NSW Government rebate level of $68,750, and the Stamp duty exemption limit with the base model, which at the time, I could do.

 

The Packs offer various levels combinations of upgraded Interior (even leather still) full sunroof, better driving intelligence and performance, (via more motors).

 

All but one colour paint, (a cool, slightly off-white metallic white) is an optional extra.  For most, the Base car won’t be enough, you’ll find your mark around $80k. (pricing has been updated for 2024 so check the Polestar website for the latest pricing.)

 

It's all about which Pack to choose.

First time driving an EV, it’s a great choice to start. It envelops you, reminds you of the interior of several other European cars. Gives you a great feeling of comfort and quality.

 

Out of preference I was in the base model, with no added “Packs”. My aim was to come under the NSW Government rebate level of $68,750, and the Stamp duty exemption limit with the base model, which at the time, I could do.

 

The Packs offer various levels combinations of upgraded Interior (even leather still) full sunroof, better driving intelligence and performance, (via more motors). All but one colour paint, (a cool, slightly off-white metallic white) is an optional extra. For most, the Base car won’t be enough, you’ll find your mark around $80k.

The recycled fabric seats were very comfortable. The whole layout, except the massive portrait style centre screen is mostly conventional ICE care feel. As is the rather large centre console which extends out to a hump in the rear floor.

 

Why do you ask does an EV have a hump for a drive shaft in the rear floor. Because the car is based on an older style car platform, not a new dedicated EV platform.

 

Everything else inside is pure euro style, dark and moody with the single tone base model seats, but more airy with the sunroof and higher, lighter coloured trim levels. Overall, It’s beautifully styled and finished. For me and my wife though, the gap (and height) of the centre console, between the front seats is not to our tastes.

Polestar 2 - Dash Board

On the road

For an EV first timer, just select Drive, put your foot down, and smoothly and quietly, off you go.   Amazing!

 

Driving, I tried hard to just use one pedal, and let the car do the braking.  This takes some practice, but you get used to it pretty quickly.  This action lets the electric motor brake the car, without brakes, which it does very effectively.

 

On smooth roads it was very smooth, but out on the rough stuff, which is more typical Sydney now, it can get a little choppy.  Some say the bigger wheels on the Sport Pack exacerbate this effect,  beyond comfort.  But it feels good.  You can just waft around town or hit the pedal and you are beyond the speed limit before you blink. 

 

The main central screen, wow!  You get in, make a couple of adjustments for driving preferences, regenerative braking level, etc.

 

The Consultant programs a route into the GPS and off you go. The Google based system is very clear, extremely intuitive and very easy to use.  Apart from Tesla, the best of the rest.

Lasting impressions

What I did love, in this ever diminishing dashboard world, was the size of the drivers dash screen, and the central navigational display option.  Very handy.


Since the big screen dominates any new EV driving experience, you can’t help but be amazed and slightly distracted by all the functions and Google maps dancing around.

 

So big, so clear, so intuitive and so fast.  Info is displayed on the screen in front of you or on the central console – in portrait position, it’s the pinnacle of the Polestar 2.

 We’d also prefer the wireless phone charging to be available on the base model (it’s not).  First world problem I know, but as wireless converts, this is fast becoming a “basic” feature, in my book.


I’d hate to finish on low note, so I won’t – so Polestar, please change the key, or just issue a Card – you know what I mean.


But am I now a Polestar fan, definitely.  Am I buying one, and will it be the Polestar 2, you’ll have to wait and see!

“Polestar is an electric performance car brand unlike any other. We innovate to drive progress and create a better future and to initiate a new era in automotive design and move away from traditional conventions.  Great design is the result of daring to experiment, innovate, and challenge traditional concepts.”

Maximilian Missoni, Head of Design at Polestar

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