The silks have finally been pulled from the Polestar 3, the eponymous Swedish marque’s second series-production model.
Set to rival the BMW iX and Jaguar’s I-Pace among others, the Polestar 3 is the first mid-sized SUV to arrive from Volvo’s premium all-electric sister brand. But while the Polestar 2 sedan-esque crossover and the limited-edition Polestar 1 performance coupe both arose from Volvo concepts, the Polestar 3 is a clean-sheet Polestar design.
Elements first seen on the ‘Precept’ concept, including the distinctive dual-blade and the full-width rear lightbar, have made the transition to production. But among the most notable elements of this “new aerodynamic profile” are the tail-lip spoiler, the aeroblades on the outer edges of the rear bumper – both included for “subtle yet effective aerodynamic optimization” – and, most intriguingly, the aero wing on the hood.
Replacing the Polestar 2’s blanked-off front grille altogether, the front aero wing – akin to a bridge across the SUV’s nose, and an example of which we recently saw on the electric Dodge Charger Daytona SRT – funnels airflow over the bonnet to improve aero efficiency. Interestingly, it also acts as a ‘Smartzone,’ and incorporates forward-facing sensors, a heated radar module and the onboard camera used in tandem with the driver assist systems. The front aero wing bridge “becomes a signature of Polestar design” moving forward.
Unlike its sister models, the Polestar 3 sits on Volvo Group’s EV-dedicated SPA2 platform, as indeed will the new Volvo EX90. In an effort to offer, what chief chassis engineer Joakim Rydholm calls, “the performance and precision that define all Polestar cars,” the Polestar 3 boasts dual-chamber adaptive air suspension, which automatically adjusts damper velocity every two milliseconds to cater the handling and ride accordingly. A torque-vectoring dual-clutch function, originally developed for the Polestar 1, also add a degree of athleticism. On the flip side, the rear e-motor can be decoupled altogether, allowing the ‘3’ to run as front-wheel drive only to preserve battery life.
A rear-biased dual-motor setup produces a combined 483 hp and 620 lb ft of torque, enough for the 2,584 kg SUV to sprint from 0 to 100km/h five seconds flat on to a top speed of 210 km/h. An optional Performance Pack will up the output to 510 hp and 671 lb ft of torque, and also throws in optimized air suspension to sharpen the driving dynamics yet further (the standard 21-inch ‘Staggered’ wheels are replaced with unique 22-inch examples). This does creep the curb weight up to 2,670 kg, though 0-100 km/h now takes just 4.7 seconds.
Mated with a 111 kWh battery pack, the Polestar 3, set to be launched in Long Range specification, is theoretically capable of up to 610 km, though this figure is still subject to final testing. The battery itself can be topped up from zero to 80 per cent in just 30 minutes thanks to 250 kW fast-charging capability. Bi-directional vehicle-to-grid charging has also been incorporated, as has a heat pump, which helps keep the lithium-ion battery in its optimum operating window for longer, thus improving the range.
Read more: Volvo’s new EX90 flagship will arrive on November 9
In keeping with Polestar’s sustainability message, the cabin has been built using animal-welfare-certified leather and “fully traceable wool” upholstery. The dash, meanwhile, is dominated by a 14.5-inch portrait touchscreen (linked with a 25-speaker Bowers & Wilkins sound system, just FYI) while a 9-inch driver display is mounted behind the steering wheel. Alongside an array of driver assist systems, the cabin features a full-length panoramic glass roof, while ‘Swedish gold’ detailing is also included with the Performance Pack.
Prices for the launch edition have been confirmed at €89,900 (just over $121K), while the Performance Pack will set interested customers back an additional €6,600 ($8,895). Online orders are now open, with the first customers examples expected to arrive in late 2023.