Volvo Car Group’ newly-formed Polestar brand has revealed its first car, and it’s impressive. The Polestar 1 is a high-performance electrified sports car that will surely turn some heads.
As Polestar’s halo car, the two-door 2+2 Grand Tourer Coupe boasts a plug-in hybrid powertrain that produces 600 horsepower and 738 pound-feet of torque. Its pure-electric driving range of up to 93 miles (150 km) is said to be the longest electric driving range of any plug-in hybrid as of the time of this writing.
The Polestar 1 is built on Volvo’s Scalable Platform Architecture (SPA) platform, though half of the components used were created from the ground up by the engineers at Polestar. It’s the first car to employ Öhlins Continuously Controlled Electronic Suspension (CESi) and benefits from a dual electric rear axle that allows for precise control over torque application at each wheel.
A carbon fiber body not only reduces weight by 500 pounds (227 kg) and lowers the overall center of gravity, but also increases torsional stiffness by 45 percent. Thomas Ingenlath, Chief Executive Officer of Polestar, stated:
“Most electric cars are fast – that’s a product of the attributes of an electric motor. However, for Polestar, performance is far more holistic than just straight-line speed. It’s about acceleration, of course, but it’s also about cornering, braking, suspension control, chassis feedback and steering feel. This is what Polestar calls Progressive Performance.”
The Polestar 1 is slated to arrive in 2019 and will be followed by two other models, the Polestar 2 and Polestar 3. Also scheduled a 2019 release, the Polestar 2 will rival the Tesla Model 3 as the Volvo Car Group’s first fully-electric vehicle.
Don’t expect to the see the Polestar 1 or any Polestar car at a dealership. They will be sold exclusively online and offered on a two- to three-year subscription basis as part of an all-inclusive package that includes pick-up and delivery services and rental options for other vehicles from the Volvo Car Group.
Next-Gen Subaru BRZ, Toyota 86 Officially Confirmed
The redesigned sports cars could ride on Toyota’s TNGA architecture.
Subaru and Toyota have announced that they are deepening their partnership, which will result in a successor to the BRZ and 86 sports cars.
“To deepen their relationship and to strengthen their ties toward advancing to the next stage while respecting the identity of each other’s brand, the two companies have agreed that Toyota will increase its equity stake in Subaru and that Subaru will acquire shares in Toyota,” joint statement stated.
The Japanese automakers did not provide specifics about what they are working on, but rumors suggest the two coupes could be underpinned by Toyota’s TNGA architecture and source power from a variation of the Subaru Ascent’s 2.4-liter engine.
In addition to the next-generation Subaru BRZ and Toyota 86, the partnership will also see the companies team up on all-wheel drive vehicles and more Subaru hybrid vehicles, and cooperate on autonomous driving tech.
Notably, Toyota has grown its ownership stake to a minimum of 20-percent voting rights, with Subaru “foreseen to become an affiliated company of Toyota.”
In related news, Toyota chief engineer Tetsuya Tada has hinted that the next-generation 86 will drive better than the new Supra.
Next-Gen Toyota 86 Will Have Better Handling Than Supra
A new 86 is coming, and it has the lofty aspiration of driving better than the Supra.
Toyota chief engineer Tetsuya Tada has confirmed that a next-generation 86 sports coupe is under development.
Speaking to Australia’s , the engineer noted that the Japanese automaker has put together “a new 86 team” and has an ambitious goal of building a better-handling sports car than the more expensive Supra.
“We have to make a new 86 that surpasses the Supra,” he said. “That is what the customer expects.”
Toyota has yet to provide any concrete details on the next Toyota 86 and, by extension, its Subaru BRZ twin, but rumors suggest it could be powered by Subaru’s 2.4-liter engine borrowed from the Ascent, perhaps producing around 230 horsepower if naturally aspirated or 260 horses with a turbocharger.
Other reports claim the two sports car will be built on Toyota’s TNGA platform rather Subaru’s new Global Platform, which can’t support a rear-wheel drive model, or possibly even on Mazda’s new rear-wheel drive platform.
What do you hope to see from the second-generation Toyota 86?
BMW Concept 4 Previews A Massive-Grille 4 Series
Its huge grille supposedly “embodies the aesthetic essence” of the BMW brand.
BMW used the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show to debut the BMW Concept 4, previewing the “new face” of the 4 Series.
The first thing that will catch your eye is its massive twin-kidney grille, which the German automaker describes as a “confident and classy” new take on the brand’s iconic grille. Look closer and you’ll notice that it is made of several small “number 4s” joined together.
“The kidney grille has always been a signature feature of BMW cars,” BMW design head Domagoj Dukec stated. “The BMW Concept 4 presents a confident and classy take on this iconic feature. At the same time, the BMW Concept 4 offers a look ahead to the expressive face of the 4 Series range.”
The design is said to be inspired by the 3.0 CSi, though the 1970s car had a much smaller grille than any modern BMW. Do you like it?
Massive grille aside, the BMW Concept 4 borrows many styling cues from the 3 Series and 8 Series and features classic sports car proportions. We’ll have to wait and see how all of this translates to the production 4 series.
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