Polestar 2 Arctic Circle: Bringing the Heat to the Ice

© PolestarA Polestar in Winter
Like other car companies, Polestar tests its vehicles in extreme weather and temperature conditions — in both oppressive heat and intense cold. However, being part of the Swedish-based Volvo Cars Group, it’s no surprise that Polestar conducts cold-weather testing in the bitter wilds of Northern Sweden; more specifically within the Arctic Circle. Inspired by these environs, Polestar engineers created the Polestar 2 Arctic Circle edition — the brand’s performance-oriented electric sport sedan concept.

© PolestarDevelopment On Ice
Polestar has many reasons to perform vehicle testing and development in a frozen location such as Northern Sweden. “Tuning a chassis on snow and ice allows us to develop our cars in what feels like slow motion and with better accuracy,” said Joakim Rydholm, Polestar chief chassis engineer and trophy-winning rally driver. “With such low levels of grip, we can feel and analyze the dynamics at a much slower pace than on tarmac, which means we can really fine-tune the way our cars behave, down to the smallest details. These are my absolute favorite conditions to develop cars in,” noted Rydholm.

© PolestarSlightly Altered
Rydholm and his team based the Arctic Circle concept on a Polestar 2 Long Range Dual Motor with an optional Performance Pack. Engineers altered this stock vehicle in several key ways: the ride height rose by 1.18 inches; power and torque were increased to 469 horsepower and 502 lb-ft of torque; and traction optimized via custom studded winter tires with 4 mm studs fitted to 19-inch OZ racing wheels.

© PolestarImproved Winter Response
As part of the Performance Pack, the Polestar 2 is fitted with adjustable performance Ohlins dampers. The Polestar team worked directly with Ohlins to design and tune dampers specifically for the Arctic Circle, with a setup slightly softer than the standard Polestar 2. Engineers added front and rear strut braces to increase torsional rigidity as well as improve steering response. The high-performance 4-piston Brembo brakes that the Polestar 2 Performance Pack uses remain unchanged for the Arctic Circle edition.

© PolestarLaunch Control
For additional performance, the Polestar 2 Arctic Circle concept gets a prototype launch control system integrated with the vehicle and activated via paddle shifters.

© PolestarSubtle Exterior Changes
Perhaps because the Arctic Circle is more of an engineering exercise rather than designer dream work, the looks of this Polestar 2 concept do not deviate much from the original model. The Arctic Circle edition stands out with four Stedi Quad Pro LED lights up front, a unique matte gray and white exterior paint treatment, and a carbon fiber skidplate under the front bumper for better undercarriage protection.

© PolestarSporty Interior
Bolted within the Polestar Arctic Circle concept’s interior are custom Recaro front bucket seats in charcoal with gold trim.

© PolestarA Shovel
And in a nod to its Nordic origins and as a nice finishing touch to the Arctic Circle concept, a carbon-fiber shovel and tow strap are mounted in the Polestar 2’s cargo area.

© PolestarHaving Fun
“I wanted to have more fun than usual with this car — really being able to push it in terms of performance and handling in a winter environment like a frozen lake,” said Rydholm. “The balance and predictability we have achieved with the raised ride height and specialized tires are particularly noticeable when you enter a bend completely sideways, with a bigger-than-usual smile on your face, and in total control,” Polestar’s chief chassis engineer enthused.

© PolestarNo Production Plans
At this time Polestar has no plans to put the Arctic Circle into production, so for now it remains a unique, extreme cold-weather concept conceived to conquer the great white north.

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