It's time to speed up electrification.
It's been over three years since Polestar split off from Volvo to become its own standalone brand. Sales of the all-electric Polestar 2 will be getting underway shortly while the Polestar 1 hybrid coupe remains a limited production model. However, the Polestar 2's platform is highly flexible and can accommodate a crossover as well. There's no doubt this will happen.
At next week's 2020 Geneva Motor Show, however, Polestar will be showing off something a bit different, the stunning Precept Concept. Hopefully, it also previews a future production EV. But Polestar CEO Thomas Ingenlath is also tired of explaining why the company needs to be focusing solely on EVs. "That type of discussion has me fed up," he recently told Automotive News Europe. "We shouldn't still be questioning this."
More specifically, Ingenlath believes the auto industry as a whole, along with governments, consumers, and even the media should be doing more to advance the growth of emissions-free driving.
"This problem does not get solved if just one party is taking action," he explained. "It requires that all three are convinced it is the right thing to do and they should work to make it happen." He goes on to say there are two reasons why the auto industry must go all-electric: to stop climate change and economics. "Some big companies worry about the risk they might expose themselves to by moving too fast into electrification. I think it's the complete opposite. The risk comes from being too slow."
As for politicians, Ingenlath denounces their generally slow pace to enact laws and regulations that make things easier for consumers to make the EV transition.
Although EVs, in general, are more expensive right now than their internal combustion engine counterparts, politicians can do more to change that. Norway is an ideal example with its generous tax incentives and exemptions from various fees. The recent battery shortages plaguing Audi e-tron production and sales of the Mercedes-Benz EQC could have been avoided, Ingenlath says, if the industry invested more heavily in large-scale battery production. Currently, battery investments are still relatively small "in comparison with the money that is still being spent to keep's today's technology on the road and what is being invested into next-generation gasoline or diesel drivetrains."
Ingenlath is tired of hearing that battery EVs won't succeed because of too many barriers. The technology is there and it's now a matter of political courage, industry outlook, and fresh consumer attitudes and outlook.