Polestar Showcases Its First Ever Car 'Polestar 1' As Independent Automaker

Posted October 20, 2017

The company has said it will move away from the traditional car-ownership model.

The first auto is due to go into production in mid-2019, at the company's new purpose-built production facility in China. The Polestar 1 will be the halo offering of the Polestar brand and is a four-seater 2-door coupe that is essentially a coupe version of the Volvo S90. At 4.5 metres long it's shorter than the BMW M4, and by the look of these pictures, wider, too. Volvo says about half of SPA is unique to the new vehicle, including the new Öhlins Continuously Controlled Electronic Suspension (CESi). A carbon fibre body reduces weight and improves stiffness, as well as lowers the car's centre of gravity.

Dealing with what will inevitably be a significant mass is an Akebono braking system (like a McLaren P1) with sizeable 400mm discs, while new electronic Ohlins suspension adapts to the road surface and your driving style automatically, or is switchable according to your tastes. Which means rear wheel drive when you're in pure-EV mode, and proper torque vectoring when you're on it.

The Polestar 1 is a performance electric hybrid, but with the longest pure electric range of any hybrid vehicle in the world, we consider it an electric auto with support from an internal combustion engine. In this application, the internal combustion unit powers the front axle.

What's more, the strangely named Polestar 1 - revealed tonight in Shanghai ahead of its Australian release in mid-2019 - has been confirmed as the first of three electrified performance cars from the Volvo sub-brand. Volvo says the auto should have a 90-mile range on electric power alone, but didn't give zero to 60 times or top speed.

Obtaining a new Polestar 1 will be a much different practice than most customers are likely familiar with. While this vehicle is a stop-gap between petrol and electric technology, Polestar has confirmed all subsequent models will feature pure electric drivetrains. Polestar CEO Thomas Ingenlath says the coupe has "amazing technology packed into it", and calls it "a great start for our new Polestar brand". "A attractive GT with fantastic technology packed into it - a great start for our new Polestar brand".

The performance aspect of the Polestar 1, however, is not limited to the engine, as it features a new Öhlins Continuously Controlled Electronic Suspension that allows the driver to change suspension settings from inside the vehicle for better ride or handling, depending on conditions. Meanwhile, timing for the 3 is unclear.

The next Polestar, however, is going to be a Tesla Model 3 competitor - a mid-sized electric sedan - which should enter production two years from now, while the third one will be an electric SUV/crossover slotting between the previous two in terms of price.