2022 Polestar 2 electric car review: Is this Tesla Model 3 rival the best new EV in Australia?
This rather good looking ev here is the polestar 2, and you should care about it because, for the first time its a car thats, uniquely positioned to really take on teslas dominant model 3., were going to see if this new swedish player has what it takes. But before we do did you know we have a dedicated ev site section over at carsguy.com, where youll be able to read the full written review of the pollstar 2 here and every other ev that launches into the market. Weve also got loads of news and advice that should help answer all of your ev questions. Now before we go on, we are going to split this review into our eight review. Subheads youll see them on your screen. Now skip ahead to the part that interests you. If you are watching on youtube, theyll be in the timeline or the description below as well, and if you are there, why not hit like why not hit subscribe? Why not hit the bell notification icon? All of those things will help you keep up to date with all of our latest content lets get into it. Some of you might be wondering what even is polstar and well get to that in a second. But we need to talk about pricing because its key to why this model is so important for the ev landscape in australia. Polstar surprised us all earlier this year, when it revealed its first car, would start wearing an msrp of just 59 900, which matches its key tesla model 3 rival.
That entry price buys you. The standard range two wheel drive model which scores a range of up to 470 kilometers 19 inch alloy wheels an 11.5 inch portrait, oriented and google integrated multimedia suite premium, audio dual zone, climate control, full led lighting, vegan interior trim, made of all sorts of recycled stuff And some, but not all of the available safety features well take a look at that later. Stepping up to the long range scores you the same kit, but with a larger 78 kilowatt hour battery good for a driving range of up to 540 kilometers. You see the price on your screen now, but keep in mind. It undercuts the equivalent long range tesla model 3 by a decent margin, stepping up once again to the performance. Spiced long range dual motor scores, you the same kit again, but this time with nearly double the performance and all wheel drive, albeit with slightly less range. While standard gear remains the same. You can customize every car with a choice of pricey but extensive packs. The plus pack adds an even more premium audio system premium, vegan upholstery extended interior lighting, panoramic sunroof, electric adjust for the driver and passenger seats, a wireless phone charger, tinted rear windows and a heat pump which can use the heat from the drivetrain to more efficiently support. This cars temperature altering functions like the air conditioning next is the pilot pack, which adds the extended safety suite to include blind spot monitoring and rear cross traffic alert and also rear, auto braking importantly, this kit also includes the adaptive cruise suite with pilot assist and a 360 degree surround view, camera youll, also get auto, dimming, rear wing mirrors, enhanced, led headlights with cornering function and animated turn signals.
Finally, only the dual motor all wheel drive model can be fitted with the performance pack, which grants it 20 inch. Alloy wheels, clad and continental tires brembo four piston brakes. Dual flow, dampers and gold highlights throughout. If you so wish, you can choose those 20 inch wheels on their own, as well as ventilated leather seats and premium paint options. Now, hopefully, youve come to terms with this cars. Clearly appealing price in the ev space establishing itself as a genuine tesla competitor, its time to look at its design. If the seemingly appealing price hasnt grabbed you, then the design certainly will have you seen this car its really quite good. Looking and like the model 3 before it, i think its destined to turn heads until there are too many of them on the roads. But have you seen those light fittings before? I think you have ill show you why to understand why the polestar 2 is looking. So good, yet somehow a little familiar, we need to understand. The brand itself you see. Polstar is an offshoot of its parent companies, volvo cars out of sweden and julie, holding out of china. This means it can borrow from volvo for its platforms and design whilst utilizing the supply chains of geely in china, where the ev market is much more developed. In fact, pollstars headquarters is in the same complex as volvo in sweden, while the majority of its cars, including the ones destined for australia, are built in factories in china.
As to its appealing, looks pollstars ceo used to be a designer himself, and while the pollstar 2 borrows a lot from its volvo cousins for now the brand promises it will move further away from its roots and become experimental and controversial in the design department. As time goes on, thats, not to say the polestar 2 isnt a statement all on its own, i think we need to stop for a moment and celebrate the fact that it cuts a sedan like silhouette in the era of suvs, but like many new evs, its Unconventional bringing a tall ride, height crossover highlights and a rear lift back, which adds up to something that stands apart on the road. The proportions are tough but fun striking, but approachable. You can count me as a fan taking a look inside the polestar 2 and while some elements like the steering wheel will be familiar from volvo products, this car is more paired back and makes even more of a minimalist scandinavian statement. The portrait screen has been freed from its frame with the bespoke software design developed alongside google and part of polstars. Unique brand promise is extensive, use of sustainable and recycled interior materials. To that end, various materials in the cabin are made of recycled bottles and theres even use of sustainably sourced biomaterials like flax, polstar promises therell be more extensive use of these kinds of things in the future. To read more about this check out the full written review over on carsguy.
com dot, a? U! The interior feels the part im surprised to find how starkly different it is not only from its tesla rival in terms of this upright design and closed in sporty feel. But im also surprised at how different it is from its volvo relations. This screen is freed from its chains this wheel, even though its the same is seated quite differently, and the raised console communicates the brands idea of making polstar a bit more individualistic than the family. All encompassing feel of volvo polstar promises its also thought of some practicality elements of this car a bit differently, so lets see if thats, true, Music, okay, so polstar says it wants to revisit and intentionally break some rules when it comes to interior design. This means, like the teslas, some things are quite different in here: theres, no ignition you just hop in and youre good to go. The dash is designed not to be distracting with simple shapes and theres a focus on user experience. With this big tablet screen, most of the functions have moved here and i was surprised to find that the slick software thats been developed alongside google was actually very good at not annoying me and thankfully, you still get a real digital dash to help it in feeling. Like a car, i never liked how the tesla model 3 tried to remove it. Interestingly, apple carplay support is not available at launch, so those with an iphone like me will be left using only bluetooth functions, but im told this type of connectivity is planned to be added in the future.
With a simple over the air update, storage, wise youve got a large trench in the door there, which holds our biggest cars guide, bottle here and one in this center console as well theres one hidden in this armrest console box. But you kind of have to choose whether youre going to have a cup holder or an armrest box there, which is a bit of a shame: theres a wireless charger and two hidden usb c ports in the back seat of the polstar 2. And i was surprised to find how much knee room and headroom i have behind my own seating position. Thats really impressive to see the nice trim continues as well, and youve got two heated seats with three levels: back here: a power outlet and adjustable air vents as well. In terms of storage, you have a small bottle holder in the door which just holds our cars guide, bottle here and two more in the drop down armrest. Now one downside related to the fact that this car shares its platform with combustion. Volvos is theres still a transmission shaft here, which means compared to most electric cars, theres less leg room, especially for that center passenger, the boot measures in at 405 litres, which is more than some hatchbacks, but less than what youd might expect from an equivalent midsize suv. It just fits our entire cars guide luggage set, as you can see, but to close it with the final case.
On top, you do need to remove the luggage cover theres, also, a small amount of room under the floor for charging equipment like any true ev. The polstar 2 also has a frunk now its not very good for storing luggage, because it is quite small, especially on all wheel, drive models, but it is good for keeping your charging. Paraphernalia pulstar actually includes a type 2 to type 2 cable as well, which you know is valued between 250 and 350 dollars and most brands dont include this so thats, quite a polite inclusion as well Music. The polstar 2 features two powertrains across three variants. The standard range packs a single motor driving the front wheels which can provide respectable power figures. Youll see on your screen now, step up to the all wheel, drive dual motor version, though, and a second, nearly equally powerful motor is added at the rear for almost double the performance that makes the top car the one were testing for this review properly. Quick. These motors are shared with volvos incoming range of electric cars and theyre, backed by a 400 volt lithium ion battery pack in either 78 or 69 kilowatt hour forms, depending on which variant you choose. What does this add up to behind the wheel, though, lets take a look Music driving the polestar 2, and i was so pleased to find that this car still brings a lot of those new fresh experiences that were seeing with a lot of these new ev models And i think a lot of that is down to the very shape of this car.
The fact that its a slinky sedan with an suv ride height it just brings something a little special and a little different. It doesnt feel like a midsize suv to drive and doesnt feel like a sedan to drive it feels somewhere in the middle and that ride height and suspension travel gives this car virtues which so few electric cars can achieve. Not only does it handle quite well which well get to in a second, but it also carries the weight of its 78 kilowatt hours of batteries really really well. It doesnt have that burdened feeling that a lot of ev versions of combustion cars get and it doesnt get the unwieldy feeling that some pure evs get it. It really does feel balanced with a lot of poise over both axles and its really unusual to see it. Doesnt have many of the negatives that we usually associate with the drive experience of an ev at all, now keep in mind. We are only driving this top spec car with the performance dampers and that might change things quite a bit compared to the more entry level models where i actually expect. The lions share of sales will be, but that, having been said its important to know anyway, because if youre considering this car against a model 3, you should know that the model 3 has quite a brittle hard ride, whereas this car is both comfortable, while keeping that Kind of playful feel in the corners and its just all around a really nicely composed package.
Now i do apologize for constantly comparing it to the model 3, but the other thing you should know is that this top spec performance version isnt as sledgehammer fast as the model 3 performance is – and i think, thats more to do with this cars relation to volvo. It still has that volvo dna of being measured in its response to things of being a little bit more comfortable and secure and those things dont really help it make the most of what an electric drivetrain can achieve, but its still ridiculously fast anyway. So i dont think you need any more power from this. The ludicrous and unleashed modes that the teslas can do are wholly unnecessary. So i think this car still achieves a really nice balance of the smooth electric motoring on offer here, but also, you know its still fast and its still capable and its still grippy on the road and to have this quality of ride and this performance at a Price, that is not only under a hundred thousand dollars for a premium brand, but also dangerously close to some of its more mainstream rivals is ridiculous. Now other more ev specific things. Yes, youve got dual motors in here, yes, its fast, yes, its really secure on the road, but youve also got your regenerative. Braking and thats all indicated through your dash here and its pretty pretty good. Really the only thing ill note about it is: there is only one regen mode and its its pretty aggressive and computer controlled uh, so thats worth keeping in mind as well.
Theres, no adjustable levels like there is in some other evs, particularly from hyundai. The only other thing that i didnt find quite so good about it was, as you get up to those freeway speeds, maybe 80 kilometers an hour and above it just gets a little bit noisy in the cabin you start to get a bit more tire noise. You start to get a bit more wind noise and some rivals have really really drilled down and addressed this with things like noise, cancelling speakers and acoustic, glass and thats, not quite a feature here. Apparently in this car. It just does get a little bit noisier at those higher speeds, but its no noisier than id say a combustion car would be so youve got to keep that in mind as well. You know the bar is set quite high for evs and another thing that surprised me was the feel of the steering. I expected the steering to be quite a bit heavier than it is in this car. There are three modes: you can adjust: theres a standard mode, a heavy mode and a light mode, but i found that the standard mode was quite a bit lighter than it was in the volvo electric xc40 that i drove, which surprised me. It feels a little bit more electrically assisted than that car too, which sort of removes a little bit of the feel from those front wheels, but on the whole, its its a really really nice steering tune.
And it keeps this car feeling light and playful and not like its too heavy, which a lot of evs can feel like the pulse. R2 is claimed to consume an amount of energy a little higher than some rivals. Youll see the numbers on your screen. Now, our all wheel drive car overshot this number slightly on our test, but keep in mind it was a brief test seeking the open road. So, with more time around town, i expect the regen braking system will have you matching or exceeding the numbers youll see on your screen for charging. It uses a european type 2 ccs charging port, which is the most popular kind in australia and on dc it can charge at a max rate of 155 kilowatts for long range versions or 130 kilowatts for the standard range version. Youll note this isnt as fast as some of its even higher voltage rivals from audi porsche, hyundai and tesla, but it will still get the car from 10 to 80 charge in just 35 minutes on the slower ac charging, which is more commonly found at supermarkets and Council car parks, the pulstar 2, can charge at a max rate of 11 kilowatts. This matches most of its rivals and the standard range will charge on one of these units in seven hours, while the long range versions will charge in eight hours. That sounds slow, but its nice to be able to regain a decent distance during your grocery shop.
One downside for our pulse r2. Unlike the nissan leaf or hyundai ioniq 5. It doesnt feature two way charging, so you cant use the car to power external devices. Polstar likes to say its separate identity from volvo means it can experiment with more outlandish concepts, but it also means it can pull a bit of an unvolvo move of putting select safety items in an optional pack. While youll get this suite of high end safety items, youll see on your screen now and rethought impact protection systems for the ev era standard. Alongside a suite of seven airbags, the pulstar 2 places its rear facing active safety equipment and the adaptive crew system in the pricey pilot pack. Now, if youre buying a polstar 2 id strongly recommend this pack anyway for two reasons: firstly, its worth it; and secondly, because even with that box, ticked youre still under the eevee rebate threshold in new south wales and victoria on the base car, it is still a Little unfortunate that you need to spend extra, though regardless polstar carries the same warranty promise as its established volvo cousins in australia with five years and unlimited kilometres and a separate 8 year and 160 000 kilometer warranty for the high voltage components. The brands local division says youll be able to service the polstar 2 at some of the same locations. You can take volvos as they use the same motors and hardware, finally, a proper rival to teslas model 3 and who would have thought it comes from an all new swedish player.
The pulstar 2 is a triumph in its design, its performance, but, most importantly, its price and ill be surprised if it doesnt take on with australias increasingly ev curious population. What do you think? Would you pick one over teslas model 3 tell us in the comments below and if you are watching on youtube and you have enjoyed this video remember to hit those like subscribe and bell notification icons to stay up to date with all of our latest content: Music.