Polestar 2 review – engine, gearbox and technical highlights

The electric powertrain here is bespoke to the Polestar 2, but will soon be shared across other models and Volvos

Evo rating
  • A very capable, polished and contemporary example of an excellent electric car
  • It still has a fair way to go before becoming an excellent performance car

The Polestar 2 is so far only available with the one powertrain option - a set of two electric motors, one on each axle, driving all four wheels via direct drive. Peak performance combined is rated at 402bhp, with 487lb ft available at zero rpm. The motors are driven by a segmented battery pack that runs along the floor, which has a total capacity of 78kWh. WLTP range figures stand at 292 miles.

By comparison, the mid-level Tesla Model 3 Long Range Dual Motor has a similar set of specifications, with a slightly smaller 75kWh battery pack that again powers two motors that give the Model 3 a slightly higher total estimated range of 325 miles. 

Under the Polestar’s skin is a modified version of Volvo’s CMP platform that’s so far only been used on the Volvo XC40. It’s proportioned differently though, at 4.6m long and 1.85m wide, making it around 100mm shorter and 100mm wider than the Tesla Model 3’s platform for comparison.

Although Polestar prides itself on being a performance brand, the Polestar 2’s overall technical make-up is pretty standard, with MacPherson struts up front and a multi-link rear. As mentioned earlier, specify the Performance Pack and it’ll receive manually adjustable Öhlins dampers and a chunkier brake package, but it still might be generous to call the Polestar 2 particularly ‘sporty’, although a Tesla Model 3 is hardly a delicate case of performance engineering

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