Polestar made a one-off rally EV, and I need to drive it immediately – Roadshow

The Scandinavian flick!


Look, I know that the idea of driving on snow and ice can often seem scary and blizzard-y and 10-car-pileup-y, but any car enthusiast who’s ever lived in a cold-weather climate can assure you: wintertime shenanigans are the best. Roadshow’s own Tim Stevens is an avid ice racer and I’ll never turn down the chance to get sideways in the snow. And if you make a living testing cars in Sweden, odds are you’re prone to doing the occasional Scandinavian flick, as well.

It’s that adoration for wintertime hooliganism that led Polestar engineer and rally driver Joakim Rydholm to create the car you see here. Making its debut Wednesday, the appropriately named Polestar 2 Arctic Circle is a one-off labor of love, and it’s frankly extremely rude that the Swedish automaker hasn’t asked me to drive it yet. You guys have my phone number.

The Arctic Circle started life as a standard dual-motor Polestar 2 with the performance pack, but the company upped the electric motors’ combined output to 469 horsepower and 502 pound-feet of torque — increases of 61 and 15, respectively. Polestar increased the 2’s ride height by 1.2 inches and fitted extremely cool 19-inch OZ rally wheels wrapped in studded winter tires.

This is hot.


On top of that, Polestar gave the Arctic Circle specially developed Öhlins dampers with springs that are 30% softer than the normal 2 hatchback. Front and rear strut braces improve the car’s torsional rigidity and the Brembo brakes are unchanged from the production car’s performance pack. Polestar even created a prototype launch control system activated via the steering wheel-mounted paddles, and if things go completely belly up and you beach yourself on a snowbank (trust me, it happens), there’s a carbon fiber shovel and a recovery strap in the trunk.

The rally look is really driven home by the Stedi Quad Pro LED front lights, not to mention the supplier sponsor logos on the C pillar. Inside, the Polestar 2 Arctic Circle has very necessary Recaro seats with Öhlins-like gold accents.

I’m willing to bet this thing is an absolute riot on a frozen lake course and I love that Polestar took the time to explore the performance potential of its electric hatchback. Of course, the company reiterates this car “is a unique showpiece and will not be put into customer production.” Still, as someone who’s all about this kind of fun, I like where Rydholm’s head is at.

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