The electric vehicle manufacturer Polestar is rapidly growing its global engineering capability with the expansion of a world-class R&D hub in the UK, the latest element in the brand’s development. Despite the challenging industry landscape, in the last year the now 250-strong UK team has more than doubled in size and will continue to expand beyond 500 people in the future.
Polestar’s new facilities will be situated at the MIRA Technology Park – a world-class automotive testing and development site in the heart of Motorsport Valley in the UK’s Midlands. Ideally placed to take advantage of Great Britain’s world-renowned automotive engineering talent pool located in and around the area, the UK R&D team has diverse expertise rarely seen within traditional OEMs.
“Going electric is a pivotal moment in the history of cars,” says Thomas Ingenlath, CEO of Polestar. “The combination of British engineering talent and Swedish expertise will ensure our cars are among the highest performing and most sustainable on the road.”
Working alongside the R&D team in Sweden allows the UK team to focus on ground-breaking engineering solutions in a bid to help Polestar reach its goals. The UK R&D team will play a crucial role in the brand’s continued evolution, immediately focusing on the development of the Polestar Precept, first revealed in 2020, and confirmed for production before 2025.
“Precept is a statement of intent for the brand in terms of design, technology and sustainability,” says Pete Allen, Head of Polestar UK R&D. “The production car will take an important step on the journey towards climate neutrality, and ours will be the team that delivers that.”
With access to a variety of specialised on-site equipment, including advanced battery testing, an extensive test track network and a selection of other independent operations based at the facility, the MIRA Technology Park was an obvious choice for the progressive Swedish brand. The expansion of Polestar’s R&D capabilities follows on from the continued growth of its model line-up, plans to increase its global sales footprint by the end of 2022, and the move to manufacture Polestar 3 in the USA as well as China. With a pipeline of cars under development, Polestar is poised for continued high-paced growth in both sales and revenue.
Polestar is the independent Swedish premium electric performance car brand founded by Volvo Cars and Geely Holding. Established in 2017, Polestar enjoys specific technological and engineering synergies with Volvo Cars and benefits from significant economies of scale as a result. The company is headquartered in Gothenburg, Sweden, and its vehicles are available and on the road in thirteen global markets across Europe, North America and China. In 2021, Polestar is expanding into five new markets in the Asia Pacific region.
In the UK, the local Polestar office is located in Maidenhead. Polestar Spaces have been opened in London and Manchester, with more to follow. Polestar also has a global research and development centre located in Coventry, responsible for future product development.
Polestar produces two electric performance cars. The Polestar 1 is a low-volume electric performance hybrid GT with a carbon fibre body, 609 hp, 1,000 Nm and an electric-only range of 124 km (WLTP) – the longest of any hybrid car in the world. The Polestar 2 electric performance fastback is the company’s first fully electric, high volume car. The Polestar 2 model range includes three variants with a combination of long- and standard range batteries as large as 78 kWh, and dual- and single motor powertrains with as much as 300 kW / 408 hp and 660 Nm.
In the future, the Polestar 3 electric performance SUV will join the portfolio, as well as the Precept – a design study vehicle released in 2020 that is slated for future production. Precept showcases the brand’s future vision in terms of sustainability, digital technology and design. In April 2021, Polestar announced a moonshot goal of creating a truly climate-neutral car by 2030 without carbon offsetting through tree-planting.
Release Polestar, Gothenburg