[Test Drive] Upgraded Polestar 2 dons Iron Man mask

The upgraded Polestar 2 offers longer driving distance with stronger performance and looks to woo trend-conscious, younger customers with a more minimalistic design than ever.

The Korea Herald had a chance to check out the Swedish electric vehicle maker’s newest product in the country during a test drive over a course of about 100 kilometers last week. The EV was launched in the country on Oct. 26.

The upgraded Polestar 2 inherits the design philosophy of the Polestar 3, the brand’s first electric sports utility vehicle that made its public debut in October last year. The first thing that stood out about the test vehicle was what the brand calls the “SmartZone” in the front of the car.

The SmartZone, which was also applied to the Polestar 3, covers up the front grille of the EV, vaguely resembling Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Iron Man and his mask. Some might see it as a downgrade if they are used to seeing a distinctive front grille on a car. Regardless, the first impression of the SmartZone blended well with the rest of the vehicle's design. The automaker described the SmartZone's function as bringing together Polestar’s latest safety technologies such as its camera and mid-distance radar.

The interior of the car follows the brand’s signature design philosophy of Scandinavian minimalism. The interior is very simple and tidy. The automaker made it so simple that the vehicle does not even have a start button. It can recognize the driver with the seat sensors, allowing the car to accelerate after the brake pedal has been touched and the doors are all closed.

Once the upgraded Polestar 2 long-range dual motor hit the road, another feature that captured the driver’s attention was the use of creep mode for inner-city driving. If the car’s One-Pedal Drive mode -- an EV feature that uses a regenerative braking effect to recharge the battery and slow down the speed to enable driving by using only the accelerator -- is off and creep mode is on, the vehicle slowly moves forward without the driver putting their foot down on the accelerator, just like how an internal combustion engine-powered vehicle would operate.

Using creep mode for drives in the city at low speeds, the ride did not feel like the typical EV experience, providing an opportunity for non-EV drivers to transfer smoothly to One Pedal Mode and offering a better riding environment for passengers.

As the test drive reached highways, the vehicle’s upgraded motor, which boasts a maximum of 421 horsepower, with 310 kW, showed a powerful performance. The acceleration was effortless and lightning-fast. On a different note, riding the Polestar 2 felt similar to driving a race car due to its sportiness, which some might describe as being a bit rigid or less cushy.

The upgraded Polestar 2's long-range dual motor’s driving distance per charge has increased by 45 km to 379 km. Before the test drive began, the car’s remaining battery was at 76 percent and showed that it could drive up to 330 km. After the one-and-a-half-hour test drive, the remaining battery was at 54 percent with a driving distance of 240 km.

The price of the upgraded Polestar 2 with a long-range dual motor begins at 60.9 million won ($46,133).

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