Polestar Unveils First Car–Polestar 1–and Outlines Electric Future
Polestar has cemented their status as a standalone brand from parents Volvo Car Group, with yesterday’s reveal of their first model, the Polestar 1, pictured above. The model is the first of three, which will all be built in a new purpose-made production facility in China, funded by parent-of-parent Zhejiang Geely Holding.
The Polestar 1 is a performance-oriented hybrid, and introduces Polestar as an electric-only performance brand. The Polestar 1 produces 600hp and 737 lb-ft of torque from a pair of electric motors–one for each rear wheel–that make 218hp between them and a 382hp ‘Drive-E’ 2.0L turbo-supercharged four-cylinder engine powering the front.
Surprising for a hybrid, the Polestar 1 can travel 90 miles on electric-only, equaling the total range of a Nissan Leaf or Fiat 500E. This raises the bar for future hybrids, and soundly beats the EV-only range of other hybrids currently on the market. Polestar is also not shy about the electrons pulsing through their cars veins, as they have designed–for the concept anyways–an awesome clear panel in the trunk, displaying stuff and things sending power places.
I like stuff and things.
The car features advanced technology in nearly every facet of its design, and not merely its powertrain. The body is constructed of ‘High Modulus CFRP’, or carbon fiber reinforced plastic, with an “Optimized Carbon Fiber Layout”–or so they claim. More impressive and understandable is the suspension of the Polestar 1: the car will be the first car to be fitted with the all-new Öhlins Continuously Controlled Electronic Suspension (CESi). As I have no idea what that is, here is the description per the press release:
“The valve constantly monitors the driver inputs and road surface conditions, reacting in two milliseconds, to immediately change the ride characteristics to the prevailing demands. For the first time on an Öhlins suspension, the driver can also make changes to the suspension settings within the car, constantly able to tailor the chassis damping and ride quality to their own requirements.”
Customers interested in this package can purchase it normally, or ‘subscribe’ to Polestar’s new program. This program aims to simplify the worries that come with owning an advanced car by rolling maintenance, repairs, car washes, and car accessories into a single flat monthly charge. These subscriptions will last two or three years, and means owners will not have to concern themselves with silly things like battery pack longevity.
Regardless of any subscription schemes, Polestar has certainly made quite the splash landing on their own two feet.
Porsche Introduces GTS-Line to 718 Series Cayman and Boxster
Expanding their seemingly-infinitely variable model line, Porsche has introduced the expected, yet still anticipated, GTS trim for their 718-series of Cayman and Boxster. For the past 15 years, the GTS designation has maintained the same formula of go-fast, track-ready bits and blacked-out looks on nearly every model Porsche has made, up to and including their Cayenne full-size SUV.
For the 718 Boxster and 718 Cayman, the GTS model takes the top-dog 2.5L turbo-boxer four-banger and turns up the heat just a bit. Available in both manual and PDK variants, the manual model makes 365hp, or 15hp more than the 718 ‘S’ models. Manual-equipped GTS’s will make 309 lb-ft f torque, compared to the PDK’s 317lbft, from 1,900RPM to 5,500RPM, 500RPM longer than PDK models.
Performance options for the ‘S’ model become standard on the GTS, such as Porsche Torque Vectoring with mechanical rear-differential, the Sport Chrono Package, and Porsche Active Suspension Management or PASM, which reduces the ride height by 10 millimeters compared to the standard suspension.
To differentiate the GTS from other, lesser 718’s, the exterior gets treated to black 20″ wheels, blacked out badges, and tinted tail lights. The interior is also treated to the Sport Seats Plus package as standard, with an embroidered GTS logo on the headrests.
Porsche is now accepting orders for the 2018 718 GTS and expects delivery at US dealers by March of 2018. The base MSRP — excluding the $1,050 delivery, processing, and handling fee — is as follows:
718 Cayman GTS $79,800
718 Boxster GTS $81,900
Good luck finding one at that price.
Ford to Offer Mustang GT Performance Package With Summer Tires Just in Time for Winter
In a terrible case of bad timing, Ford has announced that a new tire will be included in the Mustang GT Performance Package starting this fall; a specially-designed Michelin Pilot Sport 4S high-performance summer tire. Ford, to their credit, is aware of this, leading off the press release with, “Summer might now be in the rearview mirror, but it’s never too early to start thinking about the next one”.
So, next summer, Mustang owners can look forward to the first non-special edition Mustang GT to achieve a sub-four-second 0-60 time. This time is only achievable in ‘Drag Mode’ with the new optional 10-speed automatic transmission and these optional Pilot Sport 4S tires.
Sized 275/40-19 for the rear and 255/40-19 for the front, this application will be the first mass-market OEM use of the new tire line. These tires, combined with that new 10-speed, help this naturally-aspirated 5.0L V8 achieve some truly remarkable times for its price point.
I for one can’t wait for the used market 7-8 years down the line on these most-recent Mustang GT’s. That will be a lot of car for used-car cash.
I recently recieved a degree in History from the University of Nevada, Reno.