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Volvo’s performance EV brand kicks off in Geneva

The Polestar 1 plug-in hybrid has 600 horsepower and goes on sale next year.
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Engadget/Steve Dent

Volvo is flaunting its Polestar 1 to the public for the first time at the Geneva Motor Show. It will go 93 miles on a charge before the turbocharged gas engine kicks in, which will make it the longest range plug-in hybrid on the market. The two electric motors can also join forces with the 2.0 liter turbo engine to provide a much more powerful, much less eco-friendly 600 horsepower.

"This is the first and last hybrid that we'll have," Polestar COO Jonathan Goodman told Engadget. "As a coupe, and with the styling of the car, we're expecting high mileage buyers who may be reluctant to go 100 percent electric. However, with 150 km (93 miles) of autonomy, for day-to-day driving and commuting, they could just use it just on electric if they wanted."

Gallery: Polestar 1 hybrid electric coupe | 10 Photos

Polestar is determined to carve out an identity that's separate from its parent. The design is aggressive, yet sophisticated and tech heavy, with features like a smartphone entry system, orange-accented leather interior and design touches like borderless side mirrors. It looks even nicer in person than it does in these photos.

Rather than buying, you'll "subscribe" to a Polestar 1. Customers will pay a yet-to-be-disclosed monthly fee, which includes insurance, maintenance, and other perks. For instance, when it comes time for servicing, you don't have to lift a finger -- someone from Polestar will come and get the car.

Polestar is also eschewing the dealership system to sell vehicles online, much like Tesla does. It will set up two retail centers in the US by the time the Polestar 1 goes on sale (or lease, whatever) with non-commissioned consultants available to help potential clients.

The Polestar 1 is also a production-ready vehicle, so most, if not all of the features on the two Geneva vehicles will be on the final cars. Still, it's not due to arrive until mid-2019, and a lot can happen in 18 months or so.

Click here to catch up on the latest news from the 2018 Geneva Motor Show.

Steve should have known that civil engineering was not for him when he spent most of his time at university monkeying with his 8086 clone PC. Although he graduated, a lifelong obsession of wanting the Solitaire win animation to go faster had begun. Always seeking a gadget fix, he dabbles in photography, video, 3D animation and is a licensed private pilot. He followed l'amour de sa vie from Vancouver, BC, to France and now lives in Paris.

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