The current EV renaissance has been well underway for a few years now, and we’ve reached the point where the first of these EVs is currently undergoing a mid-life refresh. Later this year, the revised Polestar 2 will go into production, with more standard equipment, a new nose and all-new electric motors.
“Typically in the automotive industry, a facelift introduces superficial visual changes that often destroy the original intent of the car’s design theme. With the new model year Polestar 2, we have instead gone below the surface and improved substantial technical and mechanical components of the electric drivetrain,” said Thomas Ingenlath, CEO of Polestar.
The biggest changes are reserved for the single-motor Polestar 2. This will now come with an 82kWh battery, compared to the 78kWh packs of the two-motor cars, and should be enough to travel up to 483km. a single charge, although Polestar is still awaiting its official range estimate from the EPA.
There’s a new permanent magnet motor and silicon carbide inverter, and now the motor drives the rear wheels, not the fronts. Power and torque have also increased quite significantly, from 231 hp (172 kW) to 295 hp (220 kW) and from 243 lb-ft (330 Nm) to 361 lb-ft (490 Nm), from over a second at the 0-60 mph time. The larger battery can also quickly charge up to 205 kW.
The twin-motor Polestar 2 has had its power balance changed, so it’s now rear-biased, as opposed to front and rear motors having the same power output. Power is also increased slightly, from 402 hp (300 kW) to 416 hp (310 kW), and torque a little more noticeably from 486 lb-ft (660 Nm) to 546 lb-ft (740 Nm). Traction is improved, reducing the 0-60mph time to 4.3 seconds, and the front motor can now disengage when cruising for improved range efficiency. Polestar says it expects up to 270 miles (435 km) for this version.
The optional Performance Pack bumps it up to 449 bhp (335 kW), with the addition of Öhlins turbofan valve dampers, Brembo brakes, 20-inch forged alloy wheels, some software tweaks and seat belts. Polestar’s distinctive gold safety guards. But if you just want the power boost and not the other fast goodies, it’s possible via an over-the-air software unlock.
“The switch from front-wheel drive to rear-wheel drive in the single-motor variants and the recalibration of the torque ratio in the twin-motor variant for an increased rear-wheel-drive feel elevates the Polestar 2 driving experience to a whole another level,” said Joakim Rydholm, head of chassis development at Polestar. “The updated Polestar 2 is an even more playful and agile car, retaining its compactness and total sense of control, while becoming more mature with increased comfort.”
Polestar says the new battery chemistry means the carbon emissions to build the long-range single-motor version have dropped from 1.1 metric tons to 5.9 metric tons per car. It also increases equipment levels on some cars, adding the Pilot Pack (which includes driver aids like adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alerts) as standard on the Polestar. 2 twin-engine for North America.