Polestar 2, which is just getting ready to hit U.S. roads, is clearly a hit in EV-crazed Norway where it has captured Car of the Year.
The annual award is presented by Dagbladet, a daily newspaper in the small Scandinavian country, and is decided by a panel of expert jurors, according to the organizers. The car is also a semi-finalist for the North American Car of the Year Award for 2021, competing with seven others.
Developed by Volvo Cars, which has shifted the name of its established performance parts unit over to its electric-vehicle sub-brand, the Polestar 2 is a battery electric, five-door fastback with a zero-to-60 time of under 5 seconds, a range of more than 233 miles on a single charge and a $60,000 price tag, which is subsidized in Norway.
“To win Car of the Year in Norway, the world’s most advanced EV market, is a huge achievement for our young Polestar brand. Norway has been a key market from the start of our journey, and this level of recognition, on top of our recent People’s Choice Award from the Norwegian public, encourages and motivates us to keep pushing and carving our own path,” said Thomas Ingenlath, Polestar CEO.
The COTY announcement comes just one week after Polestar was voted as this year’s People’s Choice by the Norwegian public. Both awards are handed out by Dagbladet.
The all-Norwegian jury consists of experts, journalists, and members of Norwegian EV associations. In their jury statement, the jurors described the Polestar 2 as “a great joy to drive at a very reasonable price point.”
“The switch to all electric is hard, it’s happening fast, and I feel that all these delightful fuel cars with roaring engines that we petrol heads love are disappearing – but this is somehow not relevant when I got into the Polestar 2,” said Rune Nesheim, Dagbladet car journalist and member of the jury.
“From the second I got into the Polestar 2 I enjoyed myself and left wishing this were the car I was able to drive every day. The driving experience is extremely good, the design is sporty, cool and edgy and when the price is factored in, it’s just a great car at a great price point.”
Norway is considered by many to be the most “advanced” EV market in the world as electrified vehicles dominate the country’s sales numbers. Perhaps even more impressive is that the biggest seller in the market, Tesla, also had a new vehicle introduced this year, but didn’t capture either award — a point not lost on
“Our first year in Norway has been an exciting one. Six months ago, we did not have a single car in the country and now we stand here with two Norwegian and several international awards – it is fair to say this has been an amazing journey. I would like to thank the judges for their kind words and, most importantly, I would like to say a huge thank you to our customers and our team,” said, Alexander Hørthe, who heads up Polestar Norway, in a statement.
In November, more than half the vehicles sold in Norway were battery electric vehicles and when PHEV were added in plugins accounted 80% of all new vehicles sold in the country, up from 60% in November 2019, according to data collected by Cleantechnica.com.
Non-hybrid vehicles with gasoline or diesel engines saw their share decline to just 10.5% from 27.1% a year ago. The overall auto market volume was up 25% year-over-year in Norway, Cleantechnica reported.
Polestar has begun selling its EVs in the U.S. through showrooms that are in New York, Los Angeles, Silicon Valley and Marin County north of San Francisco. The NACTOY finalists will be announced later this month.