By Jeremy Rochow
Published: Monday, May 8, 2023
You might not have heard about the Chinese-made, Swedish-produced Polestar 2, but you would most definitely be familiar with Volvo, its parent company.
It was founded in 1996 under the name Flash Engineering to manufacture Polestar racing cars for Volvo.
In 2015, Volvo purchased the performance division of Polestar and within a couple of years, its focus was on electric vehicles.
Last year, the Polestar 2 EV was released, and while you don’t get overly futuristic vibes like you do with some of its competitors, it still has a handsome, modern look and refined lines.
Getting in the Polestar 2, our first observation was that the interior had a functional and minimalistic design, with the 14.5-inch infotainment screen taking pride of place in the centre of the dashboard.
The infotainment technology uses Google OS system, so most controls can be accessed by saying “Hey Google”.
It has Android connectivity and Apple CarPlay for iPhone users, however neither integrated as smoothly as other cars.
We also found that the Bluetooth media player would cut out at times, particularly if we drove through a blackspot.
The Polestar 2 we drove included the ‘Plus Pack’ that uses a vegan PVC-based leather alternative called WeaveTech for its upholstery.
The recycled material feels unusual; it’s not quite leather, but not cloth either. Overall, the seats are comfortable.
Above, there’s a tinted, panoramic sunroof that is great during winter, but in Australia’s blistering summers, the glass ceiling could make cooling the car an expensive exercise.
While some have reported the climate control isn’t strong enough, we found that it provides some icy cool air.
The Polestar 2 is a nice drive and reacts quickly to a push of the accelerator. With the dual-motor variant able to go from 0km/h to 100km/h in just 4.7 seconds, this shouldn’t have come as a surprise.
Where it lacks a little is the one-pedal mode, which is the Polestar 2’s regenerative braking system.
When you take your foot off the accelerator, the car automatically brakes and will come to a stop. We found this to be useful when driving down the Southern Expressway, with the battery charging as we descended the hill.
The function can be a bit clumsy when you’re driving at slower speeds. Thankfully these settings can be changed.
Range and battery
Range in the Polestar 2 isn’t quite as competitive as some similar models, but it still starts at 470km for the standard-range single motor and reaches 540km on the long-range single motor. Our test car, the long-range dual motor, had a range of 480km.
When charging the car, Polestar says full charge takes eight hours overnight with a home charger.
Using the AC charger at RAA’s Mile End office, we managed a 90 per cent charge in that time. This is the Battery Management System (BMS) kicking in to preserve battery life. According to our tech-console friend, “90 per cent is Polestar-recommended to preserve the lifespan of the battery”.
Overall, the Polestar is a comfortable driving experience with a bit of luxury at a reasonable price.
|ANCAP safety rating||5 stars|
|Warranty||Five-year unlimited warranty|