Volvo unveils Tesla Model 3 rival Polestar 2

Key Points
  • Polestar is Volvo Car Group's fully electric performance brand.
  • The Polestar 2 will be the brand's first volume vehicle. 
  • It will start at around $45,000 and be available in 2020.
The Polestar 2 electric performance car from Volvo

Electric performance brand Polestar unveiled its first fully electric vehicle on Wednesday in a bid to steal buyers away from Tesla's Model 3.

The car is the first volume model from Volvo's former performance sub-brand, which was spun out in 2017 to be a high-end electric vehicle brand.

"The buzz around the Tesla Model 3 showed where electric mobility is relevant for society today," said Polestar CEO Thomas Ingenlath at a launch event Wednesday. "And with Polestar 2 we bring an exciting premium electric car that will broaden the choice on offer in exactly this segment."

The Polestar 2 electric performance car

The Polestar 2 is the first electric car to compete with the Tesla Model 3, with a starting price of 39,900 euros ($45,400), the company said. There will also be a launch edition made during the vehicle's first 12 months of production that starts at 59,900 euros ($68,200).

The interior of the Polestar 2 electric performance car from Volvo

The vehicle is a further step into the world of electrification for Polestar. The brand's first vehicle was the Polestar 1, a plug-in hybrid. The new vehicle has more than 400 horsepower, and can go from zero to 100 kph in five seconds.

It will also be one of the first cars in the world to base its infotainment system on Google's Android system, and will have Google Maps and Google Assistant built into the system.

The vehicle will be built in China and will be available in 2020, but customers can configure their cars and place reservations on Wednesday. The company said it will be taking the vehicle on a "road show" to promote it around the world starting in early March 2019.

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