Technik: Polestar 4
No looking back
The new Polestar 4 caused quite a stir at Auto China this spring because the electric crossover offers more than its missing rear window. Reason enough to take a closer look at the car.
Getting in – unfortunately currently only in the passenger seat or in the rear. It’s not easy, but this time it’s not about driving alone. It is a prototype and this model obviously comes from an early phase, as some of the equipment details such as a head-up display are missing and this Polestar 4 is also not in series production when it comes to gaps or body details. There is still a lot to do for the developers, but everyone among Chinese Swedes is looking forward to the unusual SUV with electric drive, which will be launched on the market next year as the stylish twin of the Polestar 3.
Test driver Sam presses the gas near Santa Monica airport and, as usual, he goes on a short but impressive lap in the crossover, which, as a design highlight, does not have a rear window. “With the Polestar Precept we had already given a glimpse of a breathtaking new vehicle experience by doing away with the rear window for the first time,” says Polestar chief designer Maximilian Missoni, “at the same time, the rear head area, which plays an important role in safety “The Polestar 5, which will be produced from mid-2025 as a series version of the Precept, will also not have a rear window.
The missing rear window no longer bothers Sam. “You quickly get used to it, because there are the exterior mirrors and the digital interior mirror.” The traffic behind the test subject actually shines with the usual bright light without having to look around the rear headrests or be annoyed by the high rear. But while in other cars the driver can switch from the digital rearview mirror to the normal mirror image, looking back is only possible digitally, similar to a Sprinter class van. Nevertheless, there is a lack of sufficient light in the new Polestar model, because the four-seater is mandatory with a large panoramic roof, which also skilfully highlights the second row. Variable ambient lighting helps in the dark.
The technical basis of the 4.84 meter long crossover is the Premium Sustainable Experience Architecture developed by the parent company Geely. Thanks to the wheelbase of 3.00 meters and the closed rear wall, the electric model offers plenty of space for the occupants, especially in the rear. The seats are comfortable and nestle slightly rounded into the door elements. A second screen for media and climate controls is mounted between the front seats and allows control from the back seat. There are sustainable materials in the interior, and an optional nappa leather package with headrest speakers, while operation via Google via voice or a 15.4-inch central screen. The driver looks at a 10.2-inch display behind the wheel. Corresponding updates can be installed wirelessly (over the air / OTA). The suspension setup is pleasant, because even when the Swede is driving hard, the stubborn, sporty hardness of the Polestar 2 is missing. “The Polestar 4 will have adjustable dampers as standard in the all-wheel drive version,” smiles Sam and drives a little more quickly over the broken roads Santa Monica.
When it comes to nomenclature, Polestar is now a bit confused, because in terms of positioning and price, the new model wants to be grouped largely seamlessly between Polestar 2 and Polestar 3, with prices starting at 60,000 euros. Production of the Polestar 4n is currently ramping up at the Hangzhou Bay plant in China. It shouldn’t stay that way, because the electric model for the markets in North America and South Korea comes from the Renault Korea Motors factory in Busan. With its 2,000-employee factory, RKM has direct access to export ports, corresponding cost advantages and has 23 years of experience in vehicle manufacturing. “With the Polestar 3 scheduled to go into production in Chengdu in early 2024 and in South Carolina in summer 2024,” explains Polestar CEO Thomas Ingenlath, “we will soon be producing in five factories in three countries, supporting our global growth ambitions.”
How well the Polestar is motorized can hardly be felt during the short drive from the passenger seat and in the rear. It will be available with mono-axle and all-wheel drive. The top model of the Polestar 4 with its two electric motors on the front and rear axles produces 400 kW / 544 HP / 686 Nm, which accelerates the crossover, which weighs over two tons, from a standstill to 100 km / h in 3.8 seconds. Thanks to the 102 kWh battery, the basic version with 200 kW / 272 HP on the rear axle should travel 600 kilometers before it goes back to the charging station. The maximum charging speed is 200 kilowatts – no more is possible due to the lack of 800 volt technology. For the first time, a Polestar is designed for bi-directional charging; It can therefore also supply other consumption with electrical energy. With its cooperation partner Store Dot, Polestar wants to bring the so-called XFC (Extreme Fast Charging) technology to series production in its four-door luxury coupe from 2025, which will enable a range of 160 kilometers to be charged in five minutes.