2021 Polestar 2 Performance Review

Scorecard

Performance: 8.7

The 2021 Polestar 2 delivers impressive acceleration and a decent all-electric driving range. It doesn’t have the sportiest handling, but it still drives with confidence.

  • "Its twin electric motors provide prodigious quickness and there's a satisfying amount of engagement when the driver seeks it out." -- Car and Driver
  • "Acceleration rips are a fine warm-up, but the twistier the road gets, the more fun this car is. With all-wheel drive, a 51/49 front/rear weight distribution, low center of gravity and effective brake-based torque vectoring, the Polestar 2 pulls itself through an aggressive corner with minimal understeer, and just the right amount of audible communication from the tires." -- Autoblog
  • "The Polestar 2 has all the best driving characteristics of an electric vehicle — instant torque, low center of gravity, regenerative braking that can virtually replace the brake pedal — but it takes remarkably little time to adjust from a conventional vehicle." -- The Detroit Free Press

Powertrain Options, Horsepower, and Acceleration

  • Powertrain: two electric motors with 408 horsepower and 487 pound-feet of torque
  • Drivetrain: all-wheel drive
  • Transmission: single-speed automatic

The Polestar 2 has strong and swift acceleration, both from a stop and as you continue to get up to higher speeds. It's not as blindingly fast as other electric cars, however.

 

  • "As with most of these big-battery all-wheel-drive electric sleds, when you drop the hammer in the Polestar 2, it feels like all that sheetmetal is being yanked toward a giant invisible ACME magnet operated by Wile E. Coyote." -- Motor Trend
  • "The Polestar 2 delivers all of its torque … immediately, launching from the line as quickly as you’d ever realistically need to go. It isn’t the borderline-unpleasant accelerative shove offered by some EVs, but it’s certainly plenty for what otherwise sells itself as a sensible car." -- Forbes
  • "The accelerator feels natural in town — not muted, but one can tell it serves as a dam behind which a fury of electrons it (sic) waiting to be released. … With no shifts, there’s no relenting to the force until power tapers at higher rpm." -- Autoblog

Driving Range and MPGe Estimates

The Polestar has an EPA-estimated driving range of 275 miles, which is good for an electric vehicle. It has not been evaluated for MPGe.

Using a 240-volt Level 2 connection, the Polestar 2 can obtain a full charge in approximately eight to 10 hours. Polestar says that a fast charging station can replenish the battery up to 80% in about half an hour.

Handling and Braking

The Polestar 2 has composed handling but offers little feedback from the road. Ride quality is on the stiffer side.

  • "You experience both a stiff ride and a fair amount of body roll. And, perhaps most troubling, steering lacked feel, more akin to a sim racing wheel than a car. On the plus side, power assist is adjustable, making it easy to find a steering weight you’re happy with. The car provides plenty of feel through the seat, giving you a good sense of grip levels." -- Autoweek
  • "It's very much about performance in the corners rather than performance in a straight line. The dampers will certainly feel surprisingly firm if you are expecting the Polestar to ride like a Volvo, but this firmness is largely in the secondary ride as it still soaks up bigger bumps with aplomb." -- CNET
  • "The EV was firm but not punishing, with rough-road compliance and controlled body motions not unlike a sport-package 3-Series. … The Polestar handled my level-setting antics with aplomb, tending toward understeer but easy enough to balance. The steering is quick—2.7 turns lock-to-lock—with adjustable firmness but not a ton of feedback." -- Road and Track

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