It takes aim squarely at the talented (but not perfect) Tesla Model 3

Polestar 2 is the second bespoke model under the new Polestar electric performance sub-brand by Volvo. After revealing a sleek plug-in hybrid coupe at last year’s edition of the Geneva motor show, this year the Swedish brand has returned with its first all-electric offering, one whose specs appear to have been benchmarked against the popular Tesla Model 3.

2020 Polestar 2 arrives to rival the world's best EVs in Geneva Exterior
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The car is a slightly tall hatchback, a production version of the Volvo 40.2 concept from 2016. However, it isn’t slightly taller because its designers wanted to turn it into a crossover. Instead, this is the natural shape of a car that has its battery pack in the floor yet still provides ample headroom for occupants inside.

It should therefore be more spacious inside than its Tesla Model 3 arch rival and thanks to the hatchback design, more practical overall as well.

The car rides on a version of Volvo’s Compact Modular Architecture (CMA) platform, it has its battery pack in the floor and two electric motors, one for each driven axle - together they make 402 horsepower and 660 Nm / 487 pound-feet of torque, good enough to propel the Polestar 2 from naught to 100 km/h / 62 mph in under 5 seconds.

2020 Polestar 2 arrives to rival the world's best EVs in Geneva Exterior
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Its 78 kWh battery pack is of a decent capacity too, bestowing it with a range of 500 km according to WLTP guidelines and 275 miles based on EPA estimates. This version of the car will cost from €39,900 in Europe, but you won’t be able to buy the cheapest version immediately after it goes on sale - only the Launch Edition model will be available at first and it has extra goodies that push the price to €59,900.

Polestar 2’s interior is noticeably different compared to any other Volvo model. It looks like an evolution of what the automaker currently offers in its range.

The main focal point is still the 11-inch portrait infotainment screen, like you get in the rest of its cars.

2020 Polestar 2 arrives to rival the world's best EVs in Geneva Exterior
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However, according to Volvo, it is one of the first production cars to get an Android-based infotainment system that allows for additional apps to be installed, as well as various Google services too (Google Assistant, Google Play Store and Google Maps with support for electric vehicles). Other pieces of tech include what the company calls Pixel full LED headlights, using your phone as a key and “natural” voice control.

Volvo also offers performance options for those buyers who want to get the most out of their Polestar 2. Adjustable Öhlins dampers can be added, along with high performance Brembo brakes and special 20-inch wheels. Cars with this pack fitted also get gold seat belts, brake calipers and valve caps to set them apart.

2020 Polestar 2 arrives to rival the world's best EVs in Geneva Exterior
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The plan is to first launch the Polestar 2 for the Chinese market (where it will do very well because it’s electric, a crossover-like high-rider and it has ample legroom in the back - the latter is a hugely important selling point in the People’s Republic).

It will also be sold in the U.S. (where you won’t be able to spec the cool Pixel headlights), Canada and some western and northern European countries. Expect to see it hit the road sometime in 2020.

Aside from facing the Tesla Model 3, Polestar 2 will also have to ward off the likes of the Jaguar iPace (currently considered the best driving and handling EV in the world, even though it too is a crossover), as well as the production version of the VW ID Crozz that will make it to market in the coming years.

2020 Polestar 2 arrives to rival the world's best EVs in Geneva Exterior
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Polestar 2 versus the Tesla Model 3

Polestar 2 Tesla Model 3
Motor two e motors with 300 kW of power single motor
Drive AWD RWD
Battery 78 kWh 50 kWh
Range 275 miles 220 miles
Charging 150 kW charging available 125 kW charging available
Price $45,000* $35,000
0-60 mph 5 sec or less 5.6 seconds
Top speed TBD 130 mph
Availability Only $68,000 Launch Edition available Available
Size
Length 181.4 inches 184.8 inches
Width 70.9 inches 76.1 inches
Height 58.2 inches 56.8 inches
Wheelbase 107.7 inches 113.2 inches
Trunk capacity 14.2 cubic feet 15 cubic feet

Further reading

Polestar Takes Aim at Tesla Model 3 With 408-Horsepower Polestar 2
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Polestar Takes Aim at Tesla Model 3 With 408-Horsepower Polestar 2

2018 Polestar 1
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2018 Polestar 1

Read our full review on the 2018 Polestar 1.

2016 Volvo Concept 40 High Resolution Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2016 Volvo Concept 40.2

2018 Tesla Model 3 Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2018 Tesla Model 3.

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