Here it is, the very first standalone car from Polestar, Volvo’s performance arm. It’s been christened rather underwhelmingly as ‘Polestar 1’, but trust us - that’s the only thing that’s underwhelming here.
Let’s run through the numbers: first off, the Polestar 1 delivers 592bhp from its hybrid powertrain. We don’t have many specific technical details, but interestingly, Polestar refers to the car as an “electric car supported by an internal combustion engine” - the opposite to the norm. Volvo’s familiar 2.0-litre inline-four powers the front wheels, leaving some hefty motors to deal with the rear axle.
This approach means the car has a 93 mile electric-only range - the most of any hybrid car, Polestar claims. Want one last number? You’re looking at 738lb ft of torque from this intriguing hybird powertrain. Should do.
The 1 is based on Volvo’s Scalable Platform Architecture, and owes a lot to the S90 in terms of styling. But, 50 per cent of it is bespoke. It’s made from special stuff, too: the body is carbonfibre to lower weight and the centre of gravity, and it’s been fitted with plush Öhlins Continuously Controlled Electronic Suspension. At the back you’ll find what Polestar calls a “double electric rear axle” with a torque vectoring function.
The car will be built at the Polestar Production Centre, currently being constructed in Chengdu, China. There won’t be a conventional ownership experience here, either - you can only order the car online, and on a “two or three year subscription basis” with no deposit.
The intention is to follow the 1 up with more standalone Polestar vehicles, including a fully electric ‘Polestar 2’ to compete with the Tesla Model 3.