Read Caroline’s Polestar 2 review for everything you need to know about buying the new electric car from Polestar in Ireland.

Polestar is one of Ireland’s newest car brands, which launched here earlier in 2022. The first car to market here is of course the Polestar 2, a Tesla Model 3 rivalling premium electric car.

Since July, the brand has already registered over 100 new cars here, but expect that to rise quickly with the opening of their first retail location in Ireland in Sandyford, Dublin. Called ‘Polestar Space’, it’s where prospective buyers can view the car and take it for a test drive before starting the online process of buying the car.

The new Polestar 2 goes on sale in Ireland priced from €51,135 after the SEAI grant is applied. There’s a choice of standard range and long range batteries, and single and dual motor versions.

The Polestar 2 on test for Changing Lanes!
The Polestar 2 on test for Changing Lanes!

What’s so special about the Polestar 2?

Polestar was established as a new, standalone Swedish premium electric vehicle manufacturer in 2017. Founded by Volvo Cars and Geely Holding, Polestar cars share technology and engineering with Volvo Cars.

That’s good provenance but the most striking thing about the Polestar 2 is surely its design. For the brand’s first mass production electric car, Polestar has created a stylish sedan-style vehicle but with some of the more fashionable design cues of this era – without turning it into an SUV.

The Polestar’s compact proportions give it grace and elegance, while the raised ride height and more rugged styling features like cladding around the wheel arches and sills give it more presence than your average hatchback. There’s a tasteful palette of neutral shades to go with it.

The Volvo family DNA is indeed evident in the design – see those confident lines and upright front grille and rear – but with the prestigious stamp of the new Polestar brand.

Polestar is cool, no doubts. Their enigmatic logo appears in various places around the outside and inside of the car. At the back a full width light bar gives the car its own characteristic style.

19-inch wheels, signature LED light designs front and rear and frameless mirrors make all variants largely indistinguishable from each other.

All in all, it’s a cool Scandi alternative to the likes of the Tesla Model 3, BMW i4, Kia EV6 and the Hyundai Ioniq 5.

Polestar 2 is available with the choice of two batteries, and single motor or dual motor
Polestar 2 is available with the choice of two batteries, and single motor or dual motor

Inside the Polestar 2

For anyone familiar with the latest Volvos, the interior of the new Polestar 2 will feel quite familiar. But the design of the Polestar 2 means it feels sportier behind the wheel. The cabin is cosy with quite a high centre console, which enhances the sporty vibe. It feels well made with some nice sustainable materials used also.

The steering wheel bears the Polestar emblem, which also appears in what we think might be the world’s most beautiful gear selector! There’s a full digital driver display and portrait style touchscreen that’s also used in the latest generation Volvo cars. The touchscreen uses a Google operating system – it was the first car in the world to do so. It’s a very nice system to use with in-built Google maps and services.

Other standard features include a premium stereo with 8 speakers, front- and rear parking sensors and a rear-view camera. There are a number of packs that add more equipment.

The Polestar 2 will seat five but it’s fair to say that two will be most comfortable in the back. There is a prominent centre tunnel, which gives the car the feel of an elite sports sedan, but eats into legroom. A Tesla Model 3 feels a bit more spacious inside – but not by much.

The boot is a practical hatchback-style opening and offers 405 litres, which is on par with a lot of family hatchbacks and small SUVs. There’s a handy divider that is easy to slide up from the boot floor to separate items. A powered tailgate comes as standard.

Polestar has also include a 41 litre ‘frunk’ under the bonnet, which is handy for storing the charging cables.

The interior of the new Polestar 2
The interior of the new Polestar 2

Driving the Polestar 2

The new Polestar 2 is based on Volvo Car Group’s adaptable Compact Modular Architecture platform (CMA), which is also used by the Volvo XC40 and Volvo C40. It shares the same batteries – 69kWh or 78kWh. The best for range is the single motor version with the 78kWh long range battery, with up to 551 kilometres (WLTP) possible (from €56,135).

On test was the Polestar 2 with 78kWh, long range battery and dual motors. It is the most expensive of the range (from €63,850), but offers the best performance of the range with a whopping 408hp and the 0-100 kmh sprint completed in just 4.7 seconds. The projected range is up to 487 kilometres (WLTP).

But the performance of single motor versions is hardly shabby with both offering 231hp and the 0-100 kmh sprint in 7.4 seconds.

The Polestar 2 feels neat and agile on the road, offering a high-end driving experience behind the wheel. It cruises effortlessly at high speeds on the motorway. The ride is good on these smooth road surfaces, though it can feel a bit firm over any bumps or imperfections in the road surface.

All the controls are nicely weighted so it feels natural to drive. One pedal driving is possible, which means the car will gently come to a stop when you lift off the accelerator without having to touch the brake.

You can also adjust the steering feel but it’s not quite as entertaining to drive as a BMW i4 or as outright ‘fast’ as a Tesla Model 3. Still, it’s a balanced drive that leaves little to complain about.

Polestar 2 comes equipped with an 11 kW onboard charger, which gives more flexibility in AC charging. DC fast charging is available up to 150 kW, for an 80% charge in 35 minutes. It will take about 11 hours to charge the Polestar 2 at 7 kW from a wallbox installed at home for example.

The Polestar 2 is now available to view and test drive from Ireland's first Polestar Space in Dublin
The Polestar 2 is now available to view and test drive from Ireland’s first Polestar Space in Dublin

Did you like it?

The Polestar 2 is one of the most anticipated new cars of 2022 and it doesn’t disappoint. It’s a very welcome addition to the market, offering a slick design and clever cabin, long range and fast charging. That makes it impossible to ignore for buyers looking for one of the best electric cars on sale at the moment.

Some are a bit more spacious or a bit more fun to drive, but the Polestar is a brand you buy into because you like they way they design cars and how they sell them too.

Single motor versions look like the best value and provide adequate performance, though of course dual motor acceleration is fun! But it’s the sophistication of this car’s cruising ability and cabin refinement that make it a stylish and capable executive car.

If you sit in and love the cabin of this car, that’s probably enough already.

Welcome Polestar!

The Polestar 2 is on sale now
The Polestar 2 is on sale now

Model tested: Polestar 2 long range, dual motor
Price: 
€63,850
Battery:
78 kWh
Range: 487 km (WLTP)
Power: 408hp
Torque: 660Nm
Top speed: 205 km/h
Acceleration (0-100 km/h): 4.7 seconds
Motor Tax: 
€120 per year

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Written by Caroline Kidd

Founder and Editor of Changing Lanes, Juror for Irish Car of the Year