In an effort to bring the luxurious electric car fight to Tesla, Volvo got rid of its sub-brand of Polestar performance in its own brand last year, with the first of three cars introduced in October: the Polestar 1 coupe. This 600-horsepower sports car makes its world debut at the Geneva Motor Show today, and as you can see, it has an electric shock.
Polestar has its own stand at the fair, sitting comfortably next to the Volvo exhibition area, which marks the brand's first major auto show appearance. It only has one model for now, but Polestar promises that two more electric vehicles will follow in the next decade. The Polestar 2 is probably an EV or sportback sedan, with the Polestar 3 confirmed by Volvo as an SUV.
Two electric motors on the back of the Polestar 1 make a combination of 218 horsepower with an estimated range of 93 miles with a load. For more performance, the four-cylinder and two-liter petrol engine in the front combines with those electric motors for the full 600. Polestar says that this car has the longest range of any hybrid on the market.
The Polestar 1 also has a "phone as a key" system through an application on Apple or Android devices, which allows the driver to get into the car without a key. It also allows the driver to authorize third parties to enter the vehicle for reasons such as servicing the car, refueling or loading it, or using one of the concierge services that the Volvo brother is trying to install.
In person, the Polestar certainly has a modern and attractively aggressive look. The representatives of the company consider it an alternative of Tesla for people who seek an aesthetic different from their electrified bike ride. Frameless windows are a nice touch, combining well with bevelled side mirrors to recreate the most popular trend in smart phone displays on a car. The leather interior, subtly accentuated with an off orange, is accompanied by a large number of bright chrome controls and widgets (and smells identically to the luxury sports cars that Polestar is trying to emulate).
The two Polestar 1 exhibitions here in Geneva are production cars, but the actual production of Polestar 1 will not start until the middle of next year, so there is still a good amount of time for eager buyers to wait. A new Polestar production center specially designed in Chengdu, China is being built to make this hybrid a reality.