Polestar’s third electric vehicle, the Polestar 3, has finally been officially revealed.
Polestar is Volvo’s sub-brand focused on electric performance cars, but with the Polestar 3, a mid-size SUV, the focus is less on performance and more on cramming as many technological advances into one car as possible.
That’s not to say the Polestar 3 is slow: In standard twin-engine configuration, it produces a total of 360 kW of power and can take you from 0-60 mph in 4.9 seconds, with a top speed of 210 km/h. The optional Performance Pack raises peak power to 380kW and cuts the 0-60mph time to 4.6 seconds, with top speed remaining the same.
All versions of the Polestar 3 feature a full-length, panoramic glass roof.
Another key metric for any electric car is range, and the Polestar 3 does quite well here, at least according to the manufacturer’s preliminary figures. The car’s 111 kWh battery should provide an EPA-estimated range of 300 miles (that’s 270 miles for the Performance version). The battery can be charged at a maximum speed of 250 kW, which should take the battery from 10 to 80 percent in half an hour.
In terms of size, the Polestar 3 is actually quite large for a mid-size SUV, measuring 193 inches long, 64 inches tall and 83.5 inches wide. It seats five people and has a boot capacity of 484 liters and an additional boot of 32 liters.
It’s like the car is its own instruction manual.
Design-wise, it’s a bit more playful than the company’s previous two cars, the Polestar 1 and Polestar 2, with a double blade, T-shaped headlights and a front aero wing on the hood, combined with another aerodynamic wing on the rear spoiler and rear aircraft wings. Look closer and you’ll see small text marks in some places, like the “SmartZone/Cluster Sensor” symbol next to the front-facing camera.
Inside, it’s luxuriously minimalistic (which might sound like an oxymoron, but it’s a Volvo/Polestar kind of thing). A 14.5-inch vertical screen in the middle of the cockpit is paired with an unassuming, smaller screen in front of the driver, showing the basics like speed and battery capacity.
The Qualcomm Snapdragon infotainment system will deliver “immersive in-vehicle experiences,” Polestar says.
The seats are made from bio-derived MicroTech, which is a form of fabric made from recycled polyester, and although leather and wool are used here and there, Polestar says they’re all welfare-certified and fully traceable. Retractable door handles, LED lighting, 25-speaker black-and-white sound system and air suspension are among the niceties that will make your life in the car more comfortable.
While the clinical design, attention to detail and Polestar’s commitment to sustainability will certainly appeal to some customers, the most interesting aspect of the Polestar 3 is the technology. The company has partnered with a bunch of tech companies to make this car as safe and smart as it can be: Nvidia is responsible for the car’s core Drive computer. the infotainment system is powered by Qualcomm’s next-generation Snapdragon Cockpit platform and runs Google’s Android Automotive OS, and safety technology partners include Zenseact, Luminar and SmartEye.
The Polestar 3 Performance goes from 0-60 mph in 4.6 seconds.
That last bit means the car comes with a lot of sensors: five radar units, five external cameras, twelve external ultrasonic sensors and two eye-tracking driver tracking cameras, along with internal radar sensors that can detect “sub-millimeter movements” . Sensors on the outside keep you in your lane and make sure you don’t crash into something, while sensors on the inside can recognize when you’re distracted or sleepy. If so, the car may issue warnings or even stop completely.
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As any new EV should, the Polestar 3 comes with over-the-air update capabilities, allowing software to be improved and new features to be added without having to take the car to a service point.
The price for the Polestar 3 is an eye-watering €89,900 ($83,900 US), but Polestar points out that the car comes with plenty of features in standard configuration, so you probably won’t need to spend more money on the extras.
The car is expected to arrive in North America, Europe and China in the 4th quarter of 2023, with availability in other markets from 2024.