Tesla Model Y versus Polestar 2
The scene may have been busy over the past few days, comparing the new Tesla Model Y and the very similar Model 3, calling them too similar, but the fact of the matter is, the new small Tesla crossover has a direct rival. I am, of course, talking about the Polestar 2, itself a strange model that’s neither a sedan nor a crossover - that’s right up the Model Y’s alley. These two cars are direct rivals if we’ve ever seen any, and while their styling may be radically different, they are undoubtedly targeting the same market segment. The Tesla is the more bubble-like of the two, with its strongly arched roofline, but it can seat two more people than the Volvo (in theory, at least), so at least there’s a purpose behind the hunchback design.
In terms of performance and range, the two are very close, at least if we compare the higher-spec Long Range or Dual Motor AWD versions of the Model Y to the Polestar and its single powertrain choice. You will be able to get the Tesla Model Y Performance model that will blow the Polestar 2 clean out of the water with its 3.5-second zero to sixty time, but the other two versions available from launch are comparable.
The Polestar 1: A Repurposed Volvo Concept from 2013
It hasn’t been a month since Polestar quit being a performance tuner for Volvo and branched off as its own “performance car company.” Now, this is good news for a number of reasons, with the most important being that the company can make its own cars, completely independent of anything Volvo is offering. But, that’s also where the problem arises, as the companies first stand-alone car is expensive and lazy, at best. Word that Polestar was on its own filled me joy. Just thinking about what Polestar, without limitations, could do with its new-found independence was enough to give any self-respecting man a stiffy. Yet, three weeks later and Polestar gives us the biggest disappointment since Michael Jordan’s second comeback.
Of course, auto show season is on the horizon, so I can understand the want to rush the first model out the door in time for SEMA or even the L.A. Auto Show, but this thing is pretty much a two-door Volvo S90. In fact, it’s almost like Volvo was planning a two-door S90, decided to scrap the idea, and the polestar engineer in the next studio over dug through the trash and found the disc with the AutoCAD file on it. Oh, wait… they did…..Volvo called it the 2013 Volvo Concept Coupe…
So, what did Polestar do to make this car their own? Well, let’s go take a look.