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Volvo's Polestar 2 will feature autopilot and battery safeguards

The Tesla competitor may uphold Volvo’s reputation for safe vehicles.
Marc DeAngelis
April 28, 2020
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The Polestar 2 is still slated to come to the US this summer, despite the coronavirus pandemic. The Swedish company -- a subsidiary of Volvo -- recently announced that the all-electric sedan will start at $59,900. That’s well above the similarly spec’d Tesla Model 3, which starts at about $40,000. However, given the Volvo pedigree, the Polestar 2 may have an advantage over the Model 3 when it comes to safety. The company outlined various elements that will keep drivers safe in the event of a crash, including automatic braking, inner-side airbags and battery safeguards.

Polestar 2’s autopilot features use Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS), which the company says will come to other models from Volvo. Pilot Assist provides acceleration, breaking and steering when driving at up to 81 miles per hour. The exact mechanisms that will help aid in driver and passenger safety aren’t clear, but the technology should at least help prevent collisions on highways, and help drivers stop short if they don’t see a road hazard.

The battery pack of an electric vehicle can quickly turn into a lethal brick of lithium during a crash -- its hundreds of pounds of weight (and its inertia) could easily kill a passenger. The Polestar 2’s battery will be housed in a rigid aluminum enclosure in the vehicle’s floor structure. The company says that this design reduces the risk of damage, stiffens the chassis of the car and keeps the battery intact in case of a collision. If a crash is detected, the battery will automatically disconnect from the rest of the car, which should help prevent any electrical hazards.

The Tesla Model 3 seems to be the go-to when it comes to luxury EVs. Hopefully the Polestar 2 brings some competition -- and some life-saving safety measures -- to the space.

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