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Single Motor version is all the Polestar 2 you'll ever need.
We try the Long Range Single Motor version of the Polestar 2.
Electronic climate control, heated front seats, keyless entry with hands-free boot lid opening, electric tailgate with soft closing, embossed textile upholstery, electrically-adjustable front seats, electric lumbar support, 60/40 split folding rear seat, 19in alloy wheels, 12.3in digital driver display, 11.5in touchscreen display with DAB radio and is powered by Android Automotive OS with in-built Google apps and services.
231hp, 231hp, 402hp
Standard Range Single Motor, Long Range Single Motor, Dual Motor
Single gear automatic
The Polestar brand and this Polestar 2 have had an interesting inception to the UK. Polestar was originally Volvo's performance arm and has since morphed into a stand-alone EV manufacturer owned jointly by Volvo and its Chinese controller Geely - with the Polestar 2 produced in China.
So, just dismissing the Polestar 2 as another electric Volvo would be wrong - even though the new C40 and XC40 Recharge models share the same CMA underpinnings, the 2 is very different to drive, but more on that later.
Launched two years ago with Dual Motor versions, Standard and Long Range Single Motor versions of the Polestar were added last year.
Outside, the 'Thor's Hammer' headlights and darkened grille suggest Volvo and this familiarity is backed up by the fact that the 2 is basically a production version of the 2016 Concept 40.1, which with Volvo's move to SUVs, saw it taken on by Polestar to become their second model. Other highlights from the side include the smoothed door handles, curved wing mirrors, high waistline disguising the tall body and distinctive lower cut-out on both doors. The wing mirrors deserve mention as the mirror is frameless and the whole housing moves instead of just the glass - continuing the neat design. While at the back, there is a characteristic light signature. The 2's look shouts saloon, but this clever design is actually a hatchback. The detailing is spot on too with simple model details on the front doors and subtle colour-coded badging.
Inside, again it might have the Polestar logo on the steering wheel, and there's a simpler design, but the feel is definitely Volvo. This is probably because the steering wheel, switchgear and seats are what you'd find in an XC40. But the trim, plastics and the central 11.5in infotainment screen mark this out as something different.
The driving position is excellent and because Volvo makes some of the best car seats - they're comfy too. Rear space is good, and the boot is a cavernous 405 litres, which with the rear seats folded extends to 1,095 litres. It is good space too, uninterrupted by cable stowage, as they go in the 35 litre 'frunk'.
The 11.5in screen is powered by Android Automotive OS with in-built Google apps and services. The navigation, is far slicker to operate than Volvo's old Sensus infotainment system - and it helpfully works out the predicted battery percentage on arrival and local charge points.
The Polestar 2 is powered by a 78kWh battery, which powers one electric motor on the front axle. This is the entry-level Polestar 2, but it still produces an impressive 231hp and 330Nm of torque and all with a 2% BIK figure for 2022. The 7.4-second 0-62mph acceleration figure is slower than the acceleration feels, but we still saw a reliable 280-mile range figure in varied conditions, although Polestar claim a WLTP figure of 335 miles. When charging is needed, it is done by a Type 2 connector and takes up to eight and a quarter hours to get to 90% from an 11kW wall box. If you can find one of the latest 150kW fast chargers, which we did during the time we had this car, going from 10-90% takes just 40 minutes.
Like the Volkswagen ID3, Audi Q4 e-Tron and the Cupra Born, the Polestar 2 is a very simple car to get in and just drive. All you do once you get comfortable is select a gear via the unusual hexagonal-shaped selector and off you go. Quick off the mark, the Polestar has accurate steering and the handling is reasonably taut despite all the weight low down. On the standard 19in wheels the ride is reasonably refined, although there's a surprising amount of road noise kicked up at speed and the brakes are sometimes hard to modulate.
Two years on and even in single motor form, the Polestar 2's stylish design, tidy drive, decent range, and neat detailing, equal an incredibly attractive EV package.