Did you know that the most powerful Volvo is an XC90 T8 plug-in Hybrid with the Polestar Performance Optimization package? It has 415 horsepower and 502 pound-feet of torque. With the introduction of the new Volvo S60, the same drivetrain found its place under the gorgeous metal of the latest mid-size sedan with Polestar Engineered attire and crest.

“The new S60 T8 Polestar Engineered is an electrified car that does what you want it to,” said Henrik Green, Senior Vice President of Research and Development at Volvo Cars. “All components have been fine-tuned to work together, delivering a responsive and exciting driver’s car.”

Making the new S60 as potent as it looks, Polestar Engineered had to make some important changes compared with the classic versions of the car. Sure, the R-Design is still available and gorgeous at that, but it is not the top of the line anymore. That honor falls on the new Polestar Engineered S60.

1. Polestar Engineered Uprated the Suspension

5 things Polestar Engineered did to make Volvo S60 the opposite of political correctness
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Polestar started with suspension upgrades, even borrowing stuff from the exceptional Polestar 1 sports coupe.

As everyone who is into racing may attest, making a car fast requires more than increasing the power of the engine. All elements must be turned into a complementing package and suspension upgrades are one of the major links in that imaginary performance car chain. Polestar started with suspension upgrades, even borrowing stuff from the exceptional Polestar 1 sports coupe. And, there are new Öhlins, dual-flow valve, shock absorbers include an aluminum strut-tower brace. This design has practically been transplanted from the Polestar 1. This alone makes the front end of the car stiffer, giving it more composure and leveling in the bends, thus improving its cornering abilities.

Thanks to the Dual Flow Valve technology, a unique tech for the Öhlins shock absorbers, the suspension can react faster to surface changes additionally improving grip and performance. If you add to that the 19-or 20-inch forged lightweight wheels with Michelin Pilot Sport tires, you get quite a competent machine which is not afraid of the curves.

One of the biggest advantages of this setup is the use of Öhlins dampers. Öhlins successfully patented a system which opens the oil valve quicker making it possible to have a more precise damper. Having a consistent path of oil flow on compression and rebound, the dampers can adapt to surface changes more quickly and keep the tire in contact with the surface at all times.

Just imagine cornering on uneven surfaces. Having tires maintain optimal contact with the surface is critical, to say the least. The Öhlins dampers do just that.

2. Brembo Brakes for Exceptional Braking Performance

5 things Polestar Engineered did to make Volvo S60 the opposite of political correctness
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Polestar developed the brakes in cooperation with Brembo, ending up with a cast monoblock caliper design that has six pistons

Sitting behind the wheels are Brembo brakes with golden calipers and exceptional braking capacity. Polestar developed the brakes in cooperation with Brembo, ending up with a cast monoblock caliper design that has six pistons. Calipers and special performance pads are designed to withstand far higher temperatures compared with the standard brake pads. They hug the brake discs for the best possible stopping performance. After all, the Polestar Engineered S60 T8 Twin Engine plug-in hybrid will inspire some spirited driving. With 371 mm ventilated brake discs sitting up front, the stopping power has been adapted to the whimsical nature of the beast. Furthermore, the brake discs feature slots to help improve cooling and honestly looking badass behind those wheels.

3. A New Trademark Color and Subtle Stylistical Tweaks

5 things Polestar Engineered did to make Volvo S60 the opposite of political correctness Exterior
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Aside from the obvious crests on the front and rear, golden calipers are the first clue of wizardry

Lightning Blue was the trademark paint of all Polestar branded cars. However, that may change with the introduction of the Polestar Engineered - a package inaugurated with the new S60.

Polestar prepared quite a few interesting styling touches to set apart the S60 Polestar Engineered from other cars. Aside from the obvious crests on the front and rear, golden calipers are the first clue of wizardry. This color will, as it seems, replace the Polestar trademark blue. In addition to the golden calipers, golden contrasting seatbelts highlight the performance-focused nature. Seatbelts like this are a welcomed decoration over the new sports seats with thick side bolsters. Despite the touches of sport, luxury is still the main theme inside. The Polestar Engineered S60 offers soothing Nappa leather upholstery, metal mesh aluminum trim decorations, and a leather-covered sports steering wheel.

Volvo is definitely known for its subtle design performance insinuations and it seems that the Polestar Engineered S60 is the best representation of such ideology.
The wheels seem to be the least subtle of it all. Yet, the 20-inch units complement the sophisticated and somewhat understated side profile really well. FYI, these units are forged and not cast. All in order to reduce unsprung weight and increase dynamism.

As the final performance touch, Polestar Engineering installed black chrome exhaust tips.

4. Performance Upgrades for the Hybrid Propulsion System

5 things Polestar Engineered did to make Volvo S60 the opposite of political correctness
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Coupled with the 87-horsepower electric motor, the combined power output has been estimated to be at 400 ponies.

As noted in the introduction, Polestar offered a similar performance upgrade for Volvo’s luxury SUV XC90 (and the S90.) Given the fact that both cars share the same tech, I am led to believe that the changes Polestar Engineered made to the 2.0-liter and electric motor of the S60 are basically the same as those on the Polestar-tuned 2016 XC90 T8.

The hearth of this S60 is a 2.0-liter, turbocharged and supercharged engine developing more than 310 horsepower. Coupled with the 87-horsepower electric motor, the combined power output has been estimated to be at 400 ponies. On the other hand, the Polestar Engineered version throws in an additional 15 horsepower and 22 pound-feet of torque. Some would say this is just a gimmick, but when Polestar did much the same thing on the XC90, the results were exceptional. The Polestar XC60 is half a second faster to 60 mph compared to the standard top of the line XC60 T8.

Obvious performance gains have been reported for the S60 Polestar Engineering as well. Automotive News reported that the top of the line S60 T8 Polestar Engineered can crack 60 mph in 4.3 seconds. All this while maintaining its eco-friendly aura and exceptional fuel efficiency. Apart from releasing additional grunt, the ECU tune-up includes a fine tuning to the eight-speed transmission. Thanks to this kind of work, fuel consumption and emissions remained almost the same.

5. Available via the Care by Volvo Subscription Service

5 things Polestar Engineered did to make Volvo S60 the opposite of political correctness Exterior
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We do know that $775 a month will get you the S60 T6 in the U.S., but we have yet to find out what kind of monthly fee Volvo would require for the top of the line Polestar Engineered S60 T8

Exclusivity is one of the major factors for performance cars. While this one already has enough muscle to tackle the likes of the Mercedes-AMG C 43 or the Audi S4, Volvo tried to make the S60 even more appealing by initially offering it exclusively through the Care by Volvo subscription service. We do know that $775 a month will get you the S60 T6 in the U.S., but we have yet to find out what kind of monthly fee Volvo would require for the top of the line Polestar Engineered S60 T8. If I were to guess, I would say a bit more than a grand a month. Not only does this performance trim promote the premium subscription service, but it does so in limited numbers. So, if you really want the S60 Polestar Engineered, hurry up. I would order it in black. It’s sinister.

Further Reading

2019 Volvo S60 Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2019 Volvo S60.

2018 Polestar 1
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2018 Polestar 1

Read our full review on the 2018 Polestar 1.

This is How Polestar Saved 507 Pounds of Weight Using Carbon Fiber
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This is How Polestar Saved 507 Pounds of Weight Using Carbon Fiber

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Read more Volvo news.

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