While the Polestar 2 isn’t exactly the Tesla rival we were expecting, it does have one thing going for it-the way it hustles. In our testing, the electric hatch sprinted from 0-60 mph in 4.1 seconds and raced through the quarter mile in 12.6 seconds at 110.9 mph. The car we tested was a top-spec Launch Edition model complete with two electric motors. And launch it certainly did. However, the Swedish EV brand has extracted more power from its entry-level model.
The “Experimental” Polestar 2 the brand brought to the Goodwood Festival of Speed produces a mighty 476 hp, 68 ponies more than the aforementioned Launch Edition. It also comes with a special nickname: the “Beast.”
The Beast gets a few key extra upgrades to make sure it stops and steers just as well as it goes. The brakes and wheels were borrowed from the now-defunct Polestar 1 super-GT. As such, the Beast’s 15.7-inch front and 15.4-inch rear rotors measure 0.9 and 1.0 inch larger than those of the production Polestar 2. The wheels also grow in size to 21 inches, up a full inch over the production model’s 20-inchers. Those big wheels are wrapped in Pirelli PZero Rosso summer rubber off of the Polestar 1, too.
To give the experimental Polestar 2 a little more stance, the brand lowered it by 1.2 inches overall. It also added nearly half an inch to the car’s front and rear tracks, while Polestar fit springs that are 80 percent stiffer at the front and 40 stiffer at the rear of this machine. The ride in the Polestar 2 we tested last year was what we called “crashy,” and we can’t imagine this high-po Polestar is any more pleasant to plod about in.
The Beast also gets special paintwork, a white grille instead of a black one, and a racing stripe that goes up and over the top of the car with a “2” cut out over the hood. It looks good. Alas, there’s no word on if the Beast previews a forthcoming performance-oriented production variant of the Polestar 2.
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