Published on January 28th, 2019 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez


Volvo S60 T8 Polestar Test Driven In Los Angeles

If you are a ‘fan’ of Volvo Cars then you will know the ‘Polestar’ brand. Polestar was Volvo’s tuning division for performance models and also their motorsports vehicles. Polestar was most popular with Malaysians for its BTCC race cars and its Australian Supercars challengers. Today Polestar is a division of Volvo Cars under the ownership of Geely and its primary concern is the electrification of Volvo Cars. Yes, Volvo has taken its racing division and turned its expertise towards clean energy vehicles……with added power of course. This is why the all new Volvo S60 sedan is Polestar’s debut and we were allowed to test drive their first product, this all new S60 T8. This Is Volvo’s Electrification Division Now.


Yes……Polestar Engineered cars makes its debut with this all new Volvo S60 premium sports sedan.

This sedan is exclusively available on the top-of-the-line T8 Twin Engine version and is positioned above Volvo’s R Design versions like the S60 T6 we drove earlier. Polestar Engineered tuning is also offered with the new V60 estate and XC60 SUV from next year, available globally in limited numbers via Volvo dealerships and Care by Volvo, the company’s premium car subscription service. This might not yet be available in Malaysia as we are informed at this time.

So, what do you get from Polestar?

New lightweight wheels have an open design to show off the eye-catching golden-painted brake callipers, the new hallmark colour for Polestar Engineered components. Polestar emblems, black chrome exhaust pipes and golden seat belts also identify Volvo cars equipped with Polestar Engineered.

The Brembo mono-block brake callipers are cast in one piece and optimised for rigidity. The brake pads have increased heat tolerance while the brake discs’ slotted design further improves heat reduction.

The Polestar Engineered multi-link front and rear suspension incorporates premium Öhlins shock absorbers with a dual-flow valve that allows stiffening in the springs and dampeners while retaining comfort. The strut bar and adjustable shock absorber design are shared with the Polestar 1 plug-in hybrid performance car.

So, how was the T8 engineered S60 on the Los Angeles back roads?

At the press test drive event in Los Angeles, Volvo had the T6 R-Design in their new signature red colour for us to sample as well as their T8 Polestar engineered version. The T6 S60 which we test drove came with a 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine with both a supercharger and turbocharger producing 235kW of power and 400Nm of torque. It is paired to an 8-speed automatic transmission and drives all its 4-wheels via a mechanical all-wheel drive system. That was impressive enough to bring home to Malaysia. However, Volvo also handed us the keys to their ‘hero’ S60, the T8 Polestar Engineered version which starts with the same combustion engine, producing slightly more power and torque (245kW and 430Nm of torque). But that’s only the beginning though, because the T8 engine is paired to a 10kWh battery (mounted in the transmission tunnel of the car) and an electric motor on the back axle. Volvo says the electric motor is good for 65kW and 240Nm, which, gives the petrol engine an extra kick of performance and total combined outputs of 298kW and 670Nm.

So, how does the Polestar tweaked S60 perform. First, its no longer feels like older turbocharged Volvo’s which had bags of power that hurled you down the tarmac when you called on it. This new S60’s Polestar treatment delivers its power in a very instantaneous and ‘controlled surge or power which is mostly due to its 2020kg heft.

Its segment rivals, the Mercedes C34 and the BMW 330i will deliver excitement, yes, at every gear-change, but this S60 does it with more confidence inspiring awe. It seems like a large capacity engine block with large turbo bolted on when in reality it’s a 2.0L twin charge motor with Ohlins tuned handling for precise handling. The brembo installed brakes ‘bite’ hard when requested and it was appreciated on our mountain climb at insane law breaking speeds.

Volvo S60 T8 Polestar Specifications

Engine: 4-cylinders supercharged & turbocharged with electric motor

Power: 415bhp

Torque: 670Nm

Capacity: 1998cc

Transmission: 8-speed semi-auto

Speed: 250km/h Limited

0-100km/h: 4.4secs

Price: NA

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