Because power isn't everything, right?
For those who don't know, Polestar is the performance arm of Swedish automaker, Volvo. But it's also a standalone brand, dedicated to the art of creating luxurious, high-performance electric vehicles like the 600-horsepower plug-in hybrid Polestar 1 uber-coupe. Naturally, the fully-electric successor to the Polestar 1 follows the numerical sequence, and the Swedes have dubbed its all-electric sedan the Polestar 2.
As the answer to the Tesla Model 3, it's going to need to measure up to some pretty high standards from a technological point of view, and crucially, it's going to need to be a hot performer. Because, as has become the standard in recent years, Tesla is making a habit of proving it can outperform just about anyone, or at the very least claiming it can, in the case of Nurburgring times.
Ready to do battle, the Swedes announced it would make available a Performance Pack for the Polestar 2, which immediately had our ears standing eagerly at attention. Now, along with European pricing for the Pack, the carmaker has also given us a little more detail as to just what's included with this package.
First of all, it starts at 6,000 Euros, which works out to roughly $6,500 on current exchange rates. The Performance Pack will be coming to the US, but Polestar says US pricing will follow closer to the time of launch.
However, what we do know is just what the Performance Pack will upgrade. The good news for the Teslarati is that there isn't a power upgrade included - although, with 400 horsepower and 487 lb-ft of torque on tap from its electric drivetrain, the Polestar 2 is hardly lacking in potency. In standard guise, Polestar claims it'll sprint from 0-60 mph in under five seconds. The Tesla Model 3? That'll manage the sprint in 4.4 secs in Long Range guise, and a claimed 3.2 secs in Performance form.
So the Polestar 2 might not have the grunt to outrun the Tesla in a straight line, and it seems the brand is happy with that. Instead, the Performance Pack will focus on handling, with almost all of the upgrades centered around improving the chassis.
For starters, adjustable Ohlins dampers are included in the package, similar to the ones used in the 600-hp Polestar 1. These are complemented by four-piston Brembo front brakes with gold calipers, housed within 20-inch alloy wheels at each corner. There are a few visual cues included, too, as the Pack also adds gold seatbelts and gold valve caps.
According to Thomas Ingenlath, CEO of Polestar, "Performance Pack allows us to take Polestar 2 driving dynamics to the next level. Some highly specialized additions, tuned by our engineers, deliver an even more engaging and unique Polestar experience". The upgrades won't necessarily compromise comfort, though, and Joakim Rydholm, the man in charge of chassis development, says they've achieved a sweet spot that they call the "Golden Ride", with a positive connection to the road, remaining comfortable, but focused.
So now just one question remains - if the Polestar 2 can't outsprint a Model 3 Performance, can it outhandle it?