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Home / Reviews / Cars & bikes / Polestar 2 review: refreshed and better than ever

Polestar 2 review: refreshed and better than ever

Premium EVs don’t come much better than this long range, high performance hatchback

Polestar 2 MY2024 review tracking front

As newish car brands go, Polestar has been getting a lot right and its all-electric hatchback was pretty good to begin with. Now though, this Chinese-owned premium Swedish car company has made its great crossover saloon even better in the shape of the Polestar 2. Refreshed for the 2024 model year, the tweaked and fine-tuned Polestar 2 is beautifully made and comes with all the performance you’ll need. There’s sizeable range too, which heads realistically into the high 300-mile zone, making it perfect for longer runs.

Polestar 2 sits on the same dedicated CMA platform as that used for the Volvo XC40 and Volvo C40 Recharge – hardly surprising as both companies are part of the huge Chinese Geely corporation. Indeed, despite its obvious European styling flourishes, the Polestar 2 is built in China, but there is quality everywhere you look. Anyone who gets sniffy about cars flooding in from the Far East will have to look quite hard both inside and out to find any major flaws.

The styling

From the outside Polestar has kept the styling refreshingly minimalist, something which makes the brand stand out from the crowd. It’s easy to get a strong whiff of no-frills Scandinavian design thinking as you walk around the exterior of the car. Compared to the rest of the design, the front end actually looks surprisingly busy with its neat smooth front grille panel and sculpted bumper angles allowing air in along with light out via the super cool chiselled LED headlights.

Polestar always has an eye for colour matching too and, in the case of our test car, the exterior Magnesium worked in perfect harmony with the Zinc Nappa leather interior, complimented by Light Ash trimmings. Adding to the overall quality feel is the set of 20in 5 spoke alloys, which sit snugly inside the arches.

Design tweaks look to be fairly low-key for the refreshed Polestar 2 but, when we parked up next to the earlier car, the cosmetic touches are clear to see. The high-rise saloon feel is still there and, as before, works to great effect. You’re never going to be too worried about speed bumps and tricky kerbs, while getting in and out of that delicious interior is a cinch, thanks to the chunky doors and that ride height.

Nevertheless, the seats in the front of the Polestar 2 feel quite snug, perhaps too much so for anyone who’s on the bigger side. If you’re in the back, the space factor is much improved and the overall ambience is very impressive. This is down to the quality and colour of the interior palette and the fact that a panoramic glass roof really lifts the light and airiness factor. The boot area is solid at 405 litres, plus there’s a small frunk under the bonnet – worth a look if you can’t remember what you’ve done with the charging cable.

The drive

Interestingly, the revised Polestar 2 Long Range Single Motor model is now rear-wheel drive, eschewing the front-wheel drive earlier approach by the Swedes and bringing with it a zesty new driving experience. In fact, performance-wise the Polestar 2 feels taught and muscular. There’s no doubt you’ve got plenty of power at your disposal with this car. Equally though, it’s a very easy EV to drive and, by taking it easy, Polestar reckons you can get a return of around 3.63 miles per kWh. Not bad for a vehicle with a weight of 1994kg.

However, that weight does become quite obvious when you’re driving the Polestar 2, but rather than feeling like a burden, it leaves the car feeling incredibly well planted on the road. In fact, once you’ve got yourself bedded into that fabulous interior, the Polestar 2 is great to fling into tortuous curves and inspires plenty of confidence that you’ll emerge the other side unscathed. Again, considering the weight and its size – over 4.6 metres long, the Polestar 2 feels much more agile than you might be expecting. It’s probably better suited to longer runs than it is picking through city streets, though it can do either with ease just as long as you’re mindful of its sizeable angular dimensions.

Push the Polestar 2 consistently hard and the battery will, unsurprisingly, suffer and start to wilt. Drive it carefully though and the range is one of the best things about the car with long runs no problem at all. You get to enjoy plenty of performance along the way too, with a 0-60mph time of 5.9 seconds and a top speed of 127mph proving more than adequate for us. The battery can be replenished from 10 to 80 percent in around 35 minutes and the Polestar 2 can handle DC charging of up to 150kW. It’s all fine and dandy.

The technology

There’s plenty to get stuck into in the cockpit of the Polestar 2. Alongside that nifty drive mode shifter, which is so enjoyable to use there’s a portrait-oriented touchscreen immediately in front. The 11.2in of screen real estate work to great effect and many controls can be accessed and managed through this. You’ve got Google at your disposal too for navigation needs thanks to the integrated Android Auto arrangement, or it’s easy to opt for Apple CarPlay if preferred.

Some of the tech and its associated functionality isn’t immediately obvious to find in the Polestar 2, which is fun if you like it as you gradually suss out better ways of doing things – like turning the audio up and down. Being Google-based means the voice activated control options are also pretty dependable and this makes everyday life much easier than rifling through a touchscreen while you’re on you move.

Similarly, Polestar’s Pilot Pack is a cool add-on that brings with it a crop of driver assistance modes aided and abetted by the 360-degree surround view camera. Driving at night is enhanced too, thanks to the active bending and cornering Pixel LED headlight functionality.

Polestar 2 verdict

Polestar 2 MY2024 review village

In standard guise the Polestar 2 costs £48,950, but the example we’ve been driving boasted £900 20-inch alloys and the already mentioned Pilot Pack, which costs £2,000 but adds in those assisted driving frills that might be valuable to some owners. That takes the price up to £51,850 and that’s quite a lot.

However, the Polestar 2 is quite a car and, therefore, feels like relatively good value. We’ve spent time behind the wheel of earlier models from the Polestar portfolio and this is a much better EV to drive, not least because of the increased power and beefed up torque. Put your foot down with any real enthusiasm and it’s obvious just how much more potent this edition of the Polestar 2 really is. There’s generous range too. All told, it’s a fabulous box of tricks.

Stuff Says…

Score: 4/5

A very credible alternative if a Tesla doesn’t float your boat, the updated, mid-life Polestar 2 is better than ever.

Tech specs

Motorasynchronous electric motor
Torque362b ft
Top speed127mph
Range406 miles
Charge rate150kW
Cargo volume405 litres
Profile image of Rob Clymo Rob Clymo


Rob is a freelance motoring journalist, and contributor to Stuff magazine and Stuff.tv

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