Volvo Reveals Polestar-Branded Power Bump For S90 And V90


Don't get too excited by it, though.

For a company with its own active and competitive racing team, Volvo has been surprisingly modest with its performance model line-up. Only the S60 and V60 models (the two oldest cars in the current Volvo line-up, no less) have dedicated sporty range toppers, and it's telling that perhaps the most famous Polestar model of them all is a 400-hp C30 one-off prototype. It appears, though, that Volvo is slowly making more use of its factory racing team - as the new performance packages for the S90 and V90 handily demonstrate.

Officially referred to as a 'Polestar Performance Optimization' kit, this new package is stressed by Volvo to be far more than just a power upgrade. For the £835 it'll cost you to specify this optional extra (we only have access to UK pricing for the time being), Volvo will work its Polestar magic on the entire drivetrain. Much like the similar scheme that's available for the XC90, gearshift speeds are improved by the PPO package, as are on and off-throttle responses and extra engine flexibility that, Volvo claims, allows the S90 and V90 to "become even more dynamic and fun to drive." It's debatable whether behind-the-wheel thrills are a big priority for S90 and V90 buyers, but it's nice to know the option is there.

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The only real qualm, it seems, is that this drivetrain optimization doesn't really result in a substantial increase in engine outputs. According to Volvo, the PPO package only liberates another 5 hp from the 235-hp 2.0-liter D5 diesel engine - which likely won't have a huge impact on the car's pace, considering the weight of the S90 and V90 models. Thankfully, more substantial engines should be on the way: a Polestar-optimized T8 hybrid setup is already available for the XC90 SUV that shares a lot of major bits with the S90 and V90, and even more engines are expected to be in the works. They're a far cry from the 600-hp turbo-fours that Volvo's allegedly developing, but these PPO options are certainly appreciated.