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The Upcoming Polestar 5 EV Will Be Faster & Lighter Thanks to a New Bonded Aluminum Body Structure

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【Summary】Volvo’s electric brand Polestar is all about innovation, and the forthcoming Polestar 5 4-door GT will be no exception. The new EV's body structure will be built using a novel aluminum bonding technique. Bonded aluminum is lighter, yet more rigid, but up until now, using it in auto production has previously proven to be more labor-intensive and difficult without sacrificing quality, according to Polestar.

FutureCar Staff    Feb 15, 2022 11:00 AM PT
The Upcoming Polestar 5 EV Will Be Faster & Lighter Thanks to a New Bonded Aluminum Body Structure
Polestar’s team Formula 1 engineers developed an entirely new manufacturing process that joins the body and platform of the Polestar 5 in unison.

Volvo's electric brand Polestar is all about innovation, and the forthcoming Polestar 5 4-door GT will be no exception. The new EV's body structure will be built using a new aluminum bonding technique. Polestar describes it as a "bespoke, bonded aluminum platform".

Bonded aluminum is lighter, yet more rigid, but using it in auto production has previously proven to be more labor-intensive and difficult without sacrificing quality, according to Polestar. 

To overcome these challenges, Polestar's knowledgeable team of former Formula 1 sports cars engineers addresses this challenge by developing an entirely new, faster manufacturing process that develops both body and platform of the Polestar 5 in unison, which is a less time consuming process.

"Our UK R&D team is one of Polestar's greatest assets," says Thomas Ingenlath, Polestar CEO. "Their mix of engineering and technological expertise enables us to develop advanced, light-weight sports car technology with a creative mindset and a spirit that embraces innovative engineering. This will set Polestar apart in the years to come."

The manufacturing process results in a lighter body compared to smaller vehicles built using traditional methods. For an electric vehicle, this translates into longer range, while still delivering a high level of safety. The Polestar 5's torsional rigidity exceeds that of a traditional two-seat sports- or supercar, according to Polestar.

"We knew we wanted this car to be light-weight, we knew we wanted high quality and we knew we wanted it quickly," says Pete Allen, Head of Polestar UK R&D. "This architecture delivers outstanding dynamic and safety attributes, with low investment technology applicable to high production volumes."

Last week, Volvo Cars announced it was investing SEK 10 billion (US$1.1 billion) in its Torslanda manufacturing plant in Sweden over the next several years in preparation for the production of its next generation fully electric cars. 

As part of the investments, Volvo said it will introduce a number of new and more sustainable technologies and manufacturing processes in the plant, including the "mega casting" aluminum vehicle body parts as a single structure.

The Polestar 5 will launch in 2024 as the production evolution of the Polestar Precept concept sedan that the company unveiled in 2020. It showcases the brand's future vision in terms of design and technology.

Polestar said that development of Polestar 5 continues at a rapid pace, with global efforts led by a growing UK R&D unit, which is expected to grow to approximately 500 engineers in the coming months. The company says these teams will play a critical role in enhancing Polestar's in-house R&D capabilities. 

polestar-precept-concept_100737371.jpeg

The Polestar 5 will be a production version of the Precept Concept that was unveiled in 2020.

Polestar was established in 2017 as a new, standalone electric vehicle brand. The company was founded by Volvo Cars and its parent Chinese automaker Geely. The company is headquartered in Gothenburg, Sweden.

Polestar's first mass-market EV, the Polestar 2, is currently available in markets across Europe, North America, China and Asia Pacific. 

The Polestar 2 is recognized as the world's first vehicle to come with Google's Android Automotive OS built in. Android Automotive OS is an embedded version of Android that Google developed specifically for automakers. This means that drivers can use all of their favorite Google and Android apps right from the vehicle's infotainment screen without having to sync a smartphone. 

The Polestar 2 comes with Google Maps for navigation, along with a suite of available third-party apps that owners can download to the vehicles. 

By 2023, Polestar plans to be present in at least 30 global markets. Polestar cars are currently manufactured in two facilities in China, with additional future manufacturing planned in the U.S. at Volvo's factory in South Carolina.

The forthcoming Polestar 3 SUV will be manufactured at the Volvo Cars' production center in Ridgeville, South Carolina. All of the Polestar 3 vehicles built in South Carolina will be sold in the U.S., the company said.

Last month, Polestar announced the opening of its newest retail showroom on California's famed Pacific Coast Highway. The showrooms are called "Polestar Spaces" and offer sales, service, and test drives of the Polestar 2 since the company does not have a traditional network of dealerships.

The prime location in Orange County, CA is a key national market for electric cars and the second-largest EV market in California. The state also has the highest number of EV sales in the U.S.

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