Polestar readies a bigger-volume EV

This article was originally published here: https://www.autonews.com/cars-concepts/polestar-readies-bigger-volume-ev.


Swedish automaker Polestar will introduce what it expects to be its highest-volume vehicle in the U.S. yet.

The Volvo affiliate will bring the Polestar 3, a Porsche Cayenne-sized crossover, to the U.S. in the first quarter of 2023.

Ahead of the launch, Polestar released a new film and the first undisguised image of the electric midsize crossover. Unlike the current Volvo-inspired Polestar 2 sedan, the Polestar 3 features design elements that include a sloping silhouette and headlight and rear light styling that are distinct from other Polestar models.

“With this car, we bring the ‘sport’ back to the SUV, staying true to our performance roots,” Polestar CEO Thomas Ingenlath said.

Polestar plans to equip the new vehicle with hardware and electronics that would enable autonomous highway driving by mid-decade, including lidar sensors from Luminar Technologies and computer electronics components from Nvidia Corp. The sensors are packed into the Smart Zone — a transparent panel on the Polestar 3’s grille.

The crossover is built on a new all-electric platform developed by Volvo for its next-generation vehicles, designed with dual motors and an expected range of 372 miles, based on the European Worldwide Harmonized Light Vehicles Test Procedure. Once the technology is approved, the new platform will also offer eyes-off, hands-off autonomous driving capability.

The Polestar 3 is key for the young brand’s ambitions to grow its global sales tenfold to about 290,000 vehicles by 2025. Polestar plans to launch a new vehicle every year for the next three years, starting with the Polestar 3, and aims to increase its presence to at least 30 global markets by the end of 2023.

Globally, Polestar expects to sell 24,000 units of the crossover next year, increasing that to 67,000 in 2024 and 77,000 in 2025, according to company figures. 

“This is a major milestone for our company, one that boosts our growth trajectory and takes us into our next phase,” Ingenlath said.

U.S. dealers will learn more about Polestar 3 configurations and pricing this summer.

By the time the first Polestar 3 rolls off the assembly line early next year at Volvo’s factory near Charleston, S.C., the automaker expects to have nearly 40 stores operating across the continental U.S.

The Polestar 3 will launch in a more competitive market than the Polestar 2 did. Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Porsche are introducing battery-powered crossovers in the next few years.