Volvo’s Polestar performance brand is working on a Tesla Model 3 competitor

Volvo’s dedicated performance and luxury division, Polestar, is apparently gearing up to take on the Tesla Model 3. According to a new report from AutoCar in the U.K., Polestar’s next car, the Polestar 2, will compete directly with the Model 3 and sport an all-electric powertrain with a range up to 350 miles and an output of up to 400 horsepower. It will cost 30,000 to 50,000 British pounds ($40,000 to $66,000 U.S. dollars).

The outlet spoke with Jonathan Goodman, Polestar’s chief operating officer, at the Goodwood Festival of Speed recently. Polestar was using the spotlight of the festival to showcase its latest Polestar 1 performance hybrid flagship in the U.K. for the first time.

So far, Polestar reports strong initial interest, with more than 600 deposits taken already that total 135,000 pounds ($177,000 U.S). It features a hybrid gas-electric powertrain serving up 592 horsepower and is due for launch in the U.K. sometime in early 2019. Specific details were not shared.

As the company continues developing, researching, and marketing its latest Polestar 2, it has been learning that the entry-level model promises to be the most successful of the incoming lineup.

“That will represent the lower ‘bookend’ of our showroom range and, for now, it should give us as much access to the volume end of the EV market as we need,” Goodman told AutoCar. “The global electric car market was worth 4 million units in 2017. But it’s quite widely expected to be worth 29 million units by 2025. EV owners will come from all walks of life. So it’s a mistake to assume that, because the cars are electric, you have to make them quirky or futuristic.”

Goodman also stressed Volvo’s rather conservative approach toward building and expanding its electric vehicle lineups. His outlook on the matter sees the potential for the global electric car market. But in the same breath, he cautioned about the ambitiousness of other “established automakers,” saying that launching a subbrand for EVs is OK. But if the expansion includes alternative design, that could be detrimental to the success of a new EV brand for any automaker. That’s because in Goodman’s view, too radical of a design could hurt potential brand interest.

And because current market projections predict that the EV market could be approaching nearly 30 million cars worldwide, electric vehicles might not be as niche as some predict. This in turn pressures automakers to make sure that new electric vehicles of the future are just as easy to use as current vehicles.


Discover the engineering Easter eggs in the new 2020 Ford Explorer

The 2020 Ford Explorer received a ground-up overhaul, with major changes that include a new hybrid powertrain option. But even the engineering details of the new Explorer are worth checking out.

Will Volkswagen’s convertible T-Roc crossover start a trend?

Volkswagen's T-Roc just lost its lid. The sub-Tiguan model spawned a high-riding convertible that picks up where the Beetle left off. Buyers have two engines to choose from, and they can select a state-of-the-art infotainment system.

Porsche expands its hybrid range with three gasoline-electric Cayennes

Porsche expanded its range of electrified performance cars by releasing three hybrid variants of the Cayenne SUV. The range-topping Turbo S E-Hybrids pair a twin-turbocharged, 4.0-liter V8 engine with an electric motor to deliver 670 hp.
Buying Guides

The best hatchbacks for 2019 are small in size and big on tech

The hatchback segment isn't huge, but there are still plenty of good options to choose from. Here, we've rounded up the best hatchbacks available in America, whether you're a fan of efficiency or looks.

This 717-horsepower Dodge Charger is the ultimate family sedan

The Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat gets a 10-horsepower boost, but only for a limited-edition model. The special Charger commemorates the 1969 Dodge Charger Daytona -- one of the wildest American muscle cars.

2020 Honda Civic hatchback keeps the manual-transmission faith

The 2020 Honda Civic hatchback was treated to a subtle exterior facelift. Honda also expanded the availability of both the manual transmission and 7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system.

2019 Audi E-Tron is the first electric car to earn top IIHS safety rating

The 2019 Audi E-Tron is the first electric car to earn an IIHS Top Safety Pick+ rating. But the IIHS hasn't tested the Audi's two main rivals -- the Jaguar I-Pace and Tesla Model X.

UPS partners with TuSimple to test self-driving semi-trucks

UPS has been carrying truckloads of goods in self-driving semi-trucks since May. The vehicles are being tested in Arizona routes between Phoenix and Tucson for better service and efficiency for UPS delivery.

Vintage Electric readies the Roadster Speed Merchant, a souped-up ebike

Vintage Electric introduced the latest in its line of retro-styled premium performance ebikes for fall 2019. The Vintage Roadster gets styling cues from board track racing motorcycles and its power from a 1,123-watt battery.

Bored with stock? The best tuner cars are begging to be modified

Modification has been around almost as long as the automobile itself. Here are some of the best tuner cars you can find, ranging from American muscle standouts to Japanese drift cars.

Infiniti’s Formula One-inspired Project Black S may enter production

The Infiniti Project Black S is a Q60 luxury coupe enhanced with a Formula One-inspired hybrid powertrain. The 563-horsepower car can sprint from zero to 62 mph in under four seconds, according to Infiniti.

Toyota raises the curtain on 2020 Corolla Nightshade Editions

The 2020 Toyota Corolla SE sedan and hatchback with a CVT (continuously variable transmission) will be available in Nightshade Editions, joining the Toyota 4Runner, Camry, Highlander, and Sienna with the blacked-out trim style option.

Here’s why your Uber or Lyft car always seems to be a Toyota Camry

The Toyota Camry is one of the most popular cars sold in the United States, and not just with retail buyers. Uber and Lyft drivers love the Camry for its reliability, according to a new report.

The electric Volkswagen ID Buggy makes even Ferrari drivers stop and stare

Volkswagen traveled to the 2019 Geneva Auto Show to introduce an electric dune buggy named ID Buggy, and Digital Trends drove it in California. It's a modern-day tribute to the 1960s Meyers Manx.