SHANGHAI -- Polestar, the performance badge formerly part of Chinese-owned Volvo Cars, debuted Tuesday as a stand-alone electrified vehicle brand with the unveiling of the Polestar 1.
The muscular hybrid boasts a range of 93 miles on a full charge, 600 hp and about 738 pounds-feet of torque. Polestar plans to begin production in two years. The two-door performance hybrid kicks off a line of electrified vehicles that will be sold online as part of a two- to three-year subscription model.
Volvo and its parent, Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, said they are initially investing about $752 million (640 million euros) in Polestar, mostly for an assembly plant in China.
"The Polestar 1 bridges today's technology with the future, offering the perfect drivetrain for a Grand Touring Coupe that's likely to be used over longer distances as well as shorter, faster, enjoyable journeys," Polestar CEO Thomas Ingenlath said in a statement. "All future cars from Polestar will be electric performance vehicles."
Ingenlath is Volvo’s former design chief who oversaw the brand's recent styling renaissance.
The forthcoming Polestar 2 and Polestar 3 will be full battery-electric vehicles, the company said. The Polestar 2 will be a midsize sedan expected to compete with the Tesla Model 3, and the Polestar 3 will be an SUV, priced between the Polestar 1 and the Polestar 2.
The company expects to finish construction on an assembly plant in Chengdu, China, in mid-2018, and production of the Polestar 1 will begin a year later. Polestar 2 output is to begin by the end of 2019. Polestar said it will produce only 500 Polestar 1 coupes globally a year, and customers can preorder the vehicle starting Tuesday.