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Polestar 2 Arctic Circle: Rally-ready EV revealed

Polestar has taken its Tesla Model 3 rival rallying... in concept form. The Arctic Circle is 30mm taller than stock, and packs more power.

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Scott Collie
Scott Collie
Deputy Editor
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The Polestar 2 has been turned into a high-riding, rally-ready beast.

The Polestar 2 Arctic Circle builds on the base laid down by the Polestar 2 Beast, but adds a healthy dose of Group B-inspired cool.

Why Arctic Circle? For starters, the Polestar brand is backed by Chinese money but it’s based in famously frosty and northern Sweden, part of which crosses into the Arctic Circle. It’s also where Polestar puts its electric car through their paces in temperatures as cold as -35 degrees.

“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.

“With such low levels of grip, we can feel and analyse 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. This is my absolute favourite place to develop cars.”

Based on the Polestar 2 Long Range with the optional Performance Pack, the Arctic Circle rides 30mm higher than the regular car, and packs 350kW and 680Nm instead of the standard 300kW and 660Nm.

In fine Swedish tradition, the car rides on a set of studded winter tyres. They’re custom units, each of which features 490 studs measuring 4mm long.

The springs have been softened by 30 per cent compared stock, and the Öhlins adjustable dampers are set on the softer side. Strut braces front and rear are on hand to stiffen the structure, and a new launch control system that’s managed by steering wheel paddles has been fitted.

Forget all the bits under the skin though, even if the Arctic Circle was just an appearance package we’d be happy with it.

From the LED rally spotlights to the 19-inch OZ Racing wheels, this Polestar 2 looks like a retro-futuristic racer lifted straight from Rally Sweden. Inside, there are custom Recaro bucket seats and plenty of gold-coloured highlights.

“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,” Mr Rydholm said.

“The balance and predictability we have achieved with the raised ride height and specialised tyres are particularly noticeable when you enter a bend completely sideways, with a bigger-than-usual smile on your face, and in total control.”

MORE: Everything Polestar 2

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Scott Collie
Scott Collie

Scott Collie is an automotive journalist based in Melbourne, Australia. Scott studied journalism at RMIT University and, after a lifelong obsession with everything automotive, started covering the car industry shortly afterwards. He has a passion for travel, and is an avid Melbourne Demons supporter.

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