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  • Writer's pictureAlain Kuhn Von Kuhnenfeld

Polestar 2

This week we are reviewing the Polestar 2 FWD. Our vehicle was assembled at the Luqiao CMA Super Factory in China, with a starting MSRP of CAD $56,250.00.

Polestar 2
Photo by Vince P. Szigeti

Fun Factor: 9

The Polestar 2 is an attractive EV proposition; it offers a great real-life electrical range, sporty driving dynamics and a simplistic and functional interior. In comparison, the front-wheel drive version we tested goes from 0-100 km/h in 7 seconds, which isn't fast for an EV on paper. However, it felt faster than the announced figure due to the instant torque. If the Polestar name sounds familiar, it's due to its heritage with Volvo and racing. Polestar used to offer performance-oriented versions of certain Volvos. Back in 2013, Volvo gave us a sneak peek into the future by unveiling the Polestar 1, which exuded retro vibes reminiscent of an iconic Volvo model, the P1800. Then, in 2017, we first saw what the Polestar Brand would deliver to the world. Due to its powertrain, it would become a precursor to other high-performance vehicles from other brands. Yes, I am talking about you, AMG. At the time, most plug-in hybrids were designed for efficiency rather than speed; it was uncommon for them to be both fun and fast. The P1 had a combined horsepower of 609 and was an outstanding vehicle that offered a smooth driving experience and impressive fuel efficiency. It could transform into a true powerhouse when all its components were in sync.

Today, we focus on the Polestar 2, unveiled in 2019. The roadmap set forth for Polestar to transition to a completely electric brand. Here in North America, we got two variants: a front-wheel drive version and an AWD version. With a gross battery of 78 kWh, it provided a 434km range for the single-motor version and 418 km for the dual-motor version. Regarding the suspension, we were pleased to find the ride comfortable and stable. By 2024, the FWD variant will shift to an RWD version that will provide better acceleration and improved range capabilities, increasing the range to 514 km for the RWD (rear-wheel-drive).

Polestar 2 interior
Photo by Vince P. Szigeti

Can it Family: 7

The Polestar 2 can accommodate up to five passengers, but the upright back bench seating may be less comfortable for longer trips with children. However, the front seats are well-cushioned and adjustable, providing a more comfortable seating area. The unique arrangement of the rear seats provides additional storage space in the trunk. One thing that impressed us was the vegan WeaveTech fabric from the seat, which seem designed for families as you can clean and wipe them down effortlessly. We'd need this material on our couch!

HWY-warrior: 8

Although it may have slightly less range on paper than its competitors, we witnessed during winter testing that Polestar 2's announced range did not experience the typical 15-20% reduction like other vehicles. In fact, the Polestar 2 returned impressive numbers, making it an excellent choice for longer journeys on the road. Considering these substantial numbers, we can only anticipate an even better range in the summer.

Polestar 2 Harman Kardon
Photo by Vince P. Szigeti

Karaoke-Friendly: 8

Once again, Polestar places great importance on sound quality, perhaps influenced by Volvo's approach. Our vehicle had the Harman Kardon sound system as an add-on feature. We highly recommend this option, especially since it's bundled with the panoramic glass roof and the heat pump. This combination will enhance the car's range in colder weather conditions.

Baby-Friendly: 6

Installing the car seat in the Polestar 2 proved to be challenging due to the narrow rear door openings. However, the ISOFIX ports are conveniently located on the outer seats and are covered with plastic caps, as are the rear tether ports on all three seats. The only obstacle we faced was having to secure the back strap over the headrest instead of in between. Despite the initial difficulty, we were pleasantly surprised to find that there was still enough legroom after installation.

City Cruising: 10

Maniability in the city is excellent. It was easy to park. The one-pedal feature worked smoothly while driving in the city, eliminating the need for us to use the brake pedal. One of the best features of the Polestar 2 is its ability to customize the driving experience. You can adjust everything from the steering wheel to the suspension and acceleration to suit your mood. This makes it one of the most versatile vehicles we have ever tested. The only grief we have for 2023 models is that the security features are mostly all options, which means that in order to have a well-equipped version, you would have to purchase several additional options. Polestar has corrected the 2024 models that get more tech and can be optioned in a way that suits different drive profiles.

Cluster Polestar 2
Photo by Vince P. Szigeti

Why would we buy the Polestar 2, or what we liked about it?

This vehicle has an impressive range of 434 kilometres, offers comfortable driving dynamics, and is well-insulated. Even the single-motor version does not feel inferior to higher-end models. Additionally, you can customize driving profiles to your preferences.

Polestar 2 plug
Photo by Vince P. Szigeti

Why would we not buy the Polestar 2, or what did we not like about it?

The option packages have an unusual setup where the center screen remains blank if you are not utilizing Google Maps through the vehicle.

Polestar has lent us this vehicle for one week as a press vehicle. We have no affiliation with Polestar Canada. The above reflects our personal opinion of the car referred to above.

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