This is How Polestar Saved 507 Pounds of Weight Using Carbon Fiber
Wouldn’t you like to know just how much weight a car would save if it had all carbon fiber body panels instead of steel? It seems that Polestar has the answer. When designing their gorgeous Polestar 1, the Swedish company, which is now a stand-alone brand next to Volvo, made extensive use of Carbon Fiber Reinforced Polymer, saving 507 pounds of weight.
Carbon Fiber Body for Added Strength and Stiffness of the Polestar 1
The Polestar 1 gained a CFRP bonnet, boot lid, side panels, doors, and roof structure
The Polestar 1 gained a CFRP bonnet, boot lid, side panels, doors, and roof structure. This was a crucial effort to balance the heavy plug-in hybrid powertrain formed around the 2.0-liter, turbocharged, gasoline engine. Aside from ICE gear, the Polestar 1 uses two electric motors, enough batteries for 93 miles of all-electric range, and an advanced suspension setup. All this adds a lot of weight, now successfully set off with the carbon fiber body.
Thomas Ingenlath, Chief Executive Officer at Polestar, comments: “Carbon fiber is crucial in meeting our design, engineering and performance goals with the Polestar 1. The result is a beautiful, technological package that remains faithful to the original design with its elegant and low silhouette. It looks as good as it is to drive!”
Carbon fiber is very important for sports cars today. It is light, fire resistant, corrosion resistant, and most importantly, incredibly stiff and rigid. Remember when McLaren released that astonishing P1 GTR. Thanks to its carbon fiber tub, FIA (Federation Internationale de l’Automobile) approved it for racing without the installation of a usually mandatory roll cage. The strength of the carbon fiber tub already met the safety requirements imposed by the automobile federation. It is that incredible.
The strength of the carbon fiber tub already met the safety requirements imposed by the automobile federation.
Now, the Polestar 1 doesn’t have anything in common with the P1 (heck, I only figured out now that they have the same name,) but it does want to offer a premium sports coupe to tackle even the best from BMW, Mercedes, and Audi. Considering all of the advantages of carbon fiber, the Polesar 1 gained an important torsional structural enhancement. The so-called “dragonfly” links “the middle of the floor and rear construction” radically improving stiffness and steadiness of the whole car. Coupled with carbon fiber body panels this solution will make the Polestar 1 as rigid and stiff as some race cars. Really important for a car that is about to face off with RS, AMG, and Motorsport cars.
CFRP Elements Made the Lives of Designers so Much Easier
Thanks to low weight materials Polestar managed to keep as much weight as possible really close to the ground.
Due to unique properties of carbon fiber, the roof and all other elements made of it could be shaped exactly as the designers wanted. A low roof with seamlessly integrated glass surfaces couldn’t be achieved with the steel body. This gave a unique glistening and refined look to the coupe.
Furthermore, thanks to low weight materials Polestar managed to keep as much weight as possible really close to the ground. Coupling the low center of gravity with unmatched (for the coupe class) stiffness should give the Polestar 1 captivating and razorsharp driving characteristics probably matched only by high-end sports cars with a mid-engine setup.
Polestar has a Bright Future with the 2 and the 3
Apart from working on this beguile Coupe, Polestar offers alluring sporty packages for certain cars in the Volvo lineup. More importantly, the future will see the introduction of the Polestar 2 and the Polestar 3 models. As Polestar is an “electric performance brand”, I honestly hope that at least one of them will be a full-fledged electric car.
The Polestar 1 will be a halo car for a whole new segment of the Volvo car group - Polestar Production Centre. The factory and all accompanying objects are currently under construction, including a dedicated center for research, development, and production of carbon fiber elements. If we take into account the breadth of the investment, implications of car design, and possible influence on the market as a whole, the Polestar 1 has to be nothing short of exceptional.
We already know about the 600 horsepower and 737 lb-ft of torque its hybrid system will deliver. We can’t wait to learn about all the performance figures.
Read our full review on the 2018 Polestar 1.