Polestar 2 Vs. Tesla Model 3: How They Stack Up Against Each Other

Volvo, or rather Polestar, has unveiled a car that on paper looks like the ultimate Tesla Model 3 rival the industry has been hoping for, which is good, because competition breeds innovation.

It’s called the Polestar 2 and it’s the sub-brand’s first volume vehicle, priced from around $45,000, although buyers will also be able to purchase a Launch Edition spec for the first 12 months, which will cost them some $63,000 in the U.S., not including government incentives.

The entry-level Polestar 2 is best-matched against the Dual Motor AWD version of the Model 3, which costs about the same and even has somewhat similar performance and economy figures.

Down with the King? Not so fast

On paper, the all-electric Swede looks very impressive, thanks to its two electric motor setup, delivering a combined output of 402 HP (300 kW) and 487 lb-ft (660 Nm) of torque. It also has a 78kWh battery pack and an estimated range of 275 miles (EPA) or 500 km (WLTP). According to Polestar, the 2 can accelerate from zero to 100 km/h (62 mph) in less than 5 seconds flat, which might actually put its 0-60 mph (96 km/h) time somewhere near the dual-motor Model 3’s, which is 4.5 seconds.

That said, the Tesla has a range of 310 miles (EPA) in this configuration, and if you really cared about performance, you could just opt for the Performance variant of the Model 3, which will get you to 60 mph in just 3.3 seconds.

A bold new world

One of the main attractions when it comes to fully electric vehicles is the fact that they tend to look a lot more futuristic than your everyday compact hatchback or midsize family sedan. The Tesla Model 3 shares the same visual DNA as its Model S and Model X siblings, helping it stand out among more traditionally-styled cars.

The Polestar 2, on the other hand, is a five-door fastback that looks like a chunky Volvo of sorts, even a tad crossoverish thanks to its raised ride height and plastic lower cladding – something obviously intentional. That’s not necessarily bad seen as how the design language is certainly modern and there are plenty of sharp angles and creases to admire.

As always, equally important is the interior styling and available on-board tech. In the Model 3, or any Tesla for that matter, the cabin has a minimalist design, where all you get are indicator and shifter stalks, a pair of physical buttons on the steering wheel, buttons for the windows and that’s pretty much it. Everything else is stored within the gigantic 15.4-inch touchscreen display, with a landscape orientation.

Meanwhile, the cabin of the Polestar 2 is a little more conservative, although we still wouldn’t call it traditional. Physical buttons are also kept in check, at least compared to a regular Volvo, and in the middle there’s an 11-inch touchscreen display, housing an Android-powered infotainment system, so you get Google services at your finger tips.

If it’s your money…

Unless you’re already a Model 3 owner (and happy with your purchase), would you consider buying the entry-level Polestar 2 over the dual-motor baby Tesla?


  • Adilos Nave

    The Polestar, no question. A real car made by a real car company.

    • Bash

      Absolutely. lol

    • DMax

      Nothing is real friend, we live in a matrix.

      • no25

        who’s hurt you?

  • Bash

    I’ll take the polestar any day.

  • ErnieB

    I value my life so the polestar it is..

    • D3X

      Considering that Tesla only has good NHTSA ratings, with no EUNCAP or even IIHS thorough recent testing in sight for most Tesla cars (Model S only rated at Acceptable on small overlap test). I agree very highly that Volvo typically aces these tests from all the these safety organizations. Unless you believe Musk’s tweeting “Tesla is the safest car in the world” …

      • vvmdrf

        Musk’s claims are purely on intrusion measurements and not actual injury risk to the dummies. If you look at EuroNCAP crash scores on the model S, the S has worse injury risk in several areas compared to a modern Volvo.

      • Mike anonymous

        When the Tesla Model S originally came out, yes it was the “safest car in the world” but using that same claim today would be a fact out lie. At the time the model S came out the ‘new’ vehicles in the industry were cars like the 2011 Chrysler 300, and Mercedes was still 2-3 years away from redesigning the 2007 S-Class.

        But I agree. I wouldn’t bet my life on a Musk tweet.

        • D3X

          Highly doubt it as “safest car in the world” at any point. If anything, it would be results posted from one single organization rather than a consensus; ie through NHTSA. And it was likely working with favorable data and timelines in a narrow field. AutoPilot and all the news of fatalities have been headline news, given the known fatalities based on Tesla’s smaller user base, it’s very unlikely it’s the safest car, in fact, quite the opposite.

          Euro NCAP back in 2014 reviewed the Model S and it was indeed a 5 star, but not best in class.

          The only claim of being “Safest” was by Elon only through a keynote presnetation, when he posted a side impact comparison to a 2011 model Volvo, and only focusing on intrusion measurements rather than impact/g force datat sustained by the crashtest dummy.

  • lagunas3ca

    Comparing the Model 3 to a vehicle that won’t even begin production for another year and it still wins.

    • Stephen G

      Yes, allot of people are happier in their imagination in the future than living today in the real world.

  • Igor G-Shell

    IMO these two brands are incomparable. Tesla is like a new Ford with dreams of conquering the whole world, whereas Polestar is a more premium-ish approach to electromobility.
    But if I was in a choice situation, i would definetely prefer Polestar. In my view, the fact that Tesla is a pioneer does not make Tesla the best industry player. Polestar as a brand is much more solid, integral and attractive. I was a fan of Polestar 1 when it was announced, and now I am experiencing the same emotion with their second model. And Thomas Ingenlath – their CEO – is my sort of Elon Musk, because he is genius 🙂

    • D3X

      Tesla with their initial Model S was pretty much “Super Premium” electric vehicles with a high price tag. Volvo has also announced their plans to fully electrify their cars in the next few years, and they have been very dominant in the luxury SUV and CUV market. I’m not sure your statement is entirely true in terms of comparability. Even looking at their current offerings, the best User Experience as well as technology (touchscreen info-tainment, safety technology, and driverless tech) they are on par or close to par.

      • Igor G-Shell

        I am not claiming 100% truth, that is only my opinion. I see that tesla wants to increase its market share at any cost. They’re building several factories around the globe just to satisfy a demand. I think they are hostages of their own image. I saw many articles and reviews about tesla’s controversial build quality. Volvo group (if we speak not only about polestar brand) is trying to offer something new to the whole automotive industry. Fixed costs, car subscriptions, etc. And this focus on quality of customer service gives me a reason to say that volvo’s approach is more premium. Their share in suv and cuv segments is incomparable with, german companies, for example. So, i think their dominance is highly exaggereted, whereas tesla is doing everything to pass germans in terms of quantity of cars sold.
        repeat, that is only my point of view. Your may be different 🙂

      • Igor G-Shell

        If it is not clear, i do love volvo group and all of their existing brands)

  • J. P.

    Polestar for the win so screw you, Musk!

    • Stephen G

      Yeah Elon, everybody likes the imaginary car better than yours. So there!


    • S3XY

      Begins production in 12 months so they sat. 200,000+ Model 3’s on the road right now. Best selling sedan in the U.S.

      $35,000 Model 3 coming in 3 months.

      Good luck Oldvo.

      • D3X

        Still plenty of marketshare to go around. 200K isn’t market dominance at any degree. Volvo isn’t too late to the party, it’s just started!

  • Andrewthecarguy

    Well, looks like the Polestar is preferred, but for me, NEITHER.
    I like the 3’s exterior styling better and the 2’s interior style.

  • CJKnox
    • no25

      What does this have to do with anything? Shut up and buy one then.

    • TheBelltower

      Totally. One of the most gorgeous cars ever made!

  • EyalN

    why you have Lynk & Co car in the pictures?
    This Lynk & Co 03 is ugly

  • vvmdrf

    Anyone notice how odd the 3 looks from the side? Tall egg shaped greenhouse but very small hood/front end. Despite the extra ride-height, the P*2, has more normal proportions here.

    • Roland Fairwater

      I’ve noticed that, too.

  • TheBelltower

    That is one ugly Volvo.


      • TheBelltower

        Exactly. Not sure why they decided to make this so clunky looking. Definitely intentional. Not digging it at all.

  • Mike anonymous

    Holy Moly 77% to 12%. If I had been in the middle of taking a drink I would have most certainly darn near sprayed the computer.


  • P Roppo

    Cut the crap, this is a CHINESE car, not Swedish.

    • S3XY

      Yep. Geely owns them and saved them from bankruptcy.

      Volvo’s are Chinese cars

      • D3X

        Volvo was not bankrupt. Ford was selling the brand after they dwindled, suffered from the 2008 crisis, and did nothing with Volvo.

        Yes. Volvo is financially funded by Geely, but cars are designed in Sweden, built in Swedenm, Belgium, and US for the North American market.

      • baofe

        Tone down your tesla fan boy energy for just a second and accept the fact that 70+% of people think the Polestar is better than the 3.

      • benT

        You are ONE BIG racial conflict!!
        aren’t chew?
        Volvo is situated in Sweden as before.
        Volvo China makes Volvos for China in China – and makes shitloads and some more for Europe and USA.

        because Chinese COMPANY and BUSINESSMEN,,

        from extinction,

        You bring your KKK sized world in to the motor industry discussion forum here.

        You should be reprimanded and or banned for a month.

    • Marty

      Volvo is actually much more Swedish now than it’s been for many years. It’s also clear that the Swedish are influencing Geely more than the Chinese are influencing Volvo.

      And no, Geely didn’t save Volvo from bankruptcy, but they saved it from Ford.

  • S3XY

    Front is alright minus the unnecessary ICE grill. Rear end like on all Volvos is ugly. Boxy shape in the back which isn’t attractive. Model 3 has better cleaner looks overall. Specs are alright but considering this wont be produced for another year and Model 3’s are everywhere and being pumped out like nothing and the cheaper 3 is coming soon… This will be forgotten until and if it comes out.

    More EV’s the better. Good luck Oldvo

    • D3X

      Why wouldn’t it come out? Volvo has been making cars for decades (maybe even a century), and they already have cars pumping out and selling. The XC40, which has a lot of similarities, has been in very high demand.

  • Alx

    I get the vibe that people dislike Tesla more than they like Polestar.

    • Mike anonymous

      What?!?! Come on.. everyone loves Tesla. They’re the best and they’re going to dominate the EV market place. Tesla at a loss, HA. What led you to think that???



      (Btw that’s sarcasm if you didn’t catch it, not meant to be malicious to either party). In all seriousness I would personally go with what I think looks best to me, and what vehicle I personally believe offer the best quality and ‘bang’ for the buck. I’m not against Tesla, but I’m not going to fan-boy over them or any other company.

      It should be about what is best to you, & so long if it’s what you like, then that is all that really matters in the end.

      • D3X

        …as well, for the greater good of the Earth by using a more sustainable energy.

    • PK

      if you have common sense then yes people would go for Polestar. how hard can that be?

      • Alx

        how hard can it be to miss the point of what I said? clearly not too hard for you.

        • PK

          thought you were against picking for polestar. my bad 😛

          • Alx

            all good. I drive a V60 so electric Volvo is definitely a car I am interested in.

            my point was that most people are disappointed with Polestar 2, but the dislike for Tesla (read Elon Musk) is so strong, that they’d choose it over Tesla even if they don’t really like it.

  • cGmc11

    the Polestar 2 will undoubtedly be much more reliable than the Tesla Model 3 … but ask Consumer Reports about it.

    • D3X

      Consumer reports?
      Since the internet, I find them losing relevance and credibility at this day and age.


    • TheBelltower

      Volvo lands dead last in CR’s list of reliability. I can’t imagine that a new type of car developed from a spinoff brand will help.


  • Rot

    Tesla = not car

    • benT



      not smart.

      • Some ol’ bloke

        BenT = Clever

      • Rot

        “transporting device”

  • alexxx

    I ll take Volvo over Tesla any day thank you

  • anthony801

    Neither. I’m hoping Honda brings over the Honda E stateside.

  • Musk is too busy making late night visits to married women, so he can creampie them.

  • Steve Cohn

    Consider this… two relatively small auto mfg companies producing terrific EV sport sedans. Where are the U.S. big 3? (or is it 2 1/2?). U.S. auto companies are sleeping while smaller outfits are coming out with cars enthusiasts really want.

    • TheBelltower

      Tesla has replaced Chrysler as the third in the “big 3.”

  • Mr. EP9

    I see many people prefer the Polestar over the Model 3 and who can blame them? The Tesla looks like a suppository on wheels. So unappealing.

  • The Bard

    Tesla is all about self-driving, with half a million Tesla’s collecting data for many many years. How Volvo can compete with Tesla? Simply impossible!

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