China is the world’s largest EV market. It’s also Polestar’s second home, the site of all of our manufacturing facilities, and the place that enables us to realise our technological and design ambitions on the scale required to truly drive (see what we did there) the e-mobility revolution.
And given that China is, in many ways, the entire automotive industry in microcosm, an appearance at a Chinese auto show is an opportunity to interact with the industry directly. Which is why we appeared at Auto Shanghai 2021.
There were a number of highlights which commanded the lion’s share of the Polestar-related press around the event. The golden Polestar 1 was one of them. “The Polestar 1 is already one of the most striking cars to spot on the road today,” enthuses Road Show by CNET. “And for 25 fortunate customers, it’s about to become even more jaw-dropping.”
Built to commemorate the Polestar 1’s final production year, the golden version is a send-off in style for our electric performance hybrid. Matte gold exterior, matching stitching on the Nappa leather interior, and black wheels ensured that this extremely limited-run Polestar 1 (25 to be built total) shone like a beacon for the in-person and virtual attendees of Auto Shanghai 2021.
Another focus for press and public alike was Polestar CEO Thomas Ingenlath’s wake-up call, delivered in the form of a keynote to those who would prioritise market valuations over environmental protection. “It frankly amazes me that there are companies out there that are worth billions of dollars and have never made a car,” he says. “I would like to today state clearly that the electric mobility revolution needs to be grounded in reality, not dreams.”
Which is not to say that dreams don’t play a part. Thinking beyond the current reality is how revolutions are formed, after all. But the collective ambition that is a more sustainable electric future needs to be firmly anchored in the real world. In today’s automotive landscape.
And what better place to address the current state of automotive than China?
The Overview Effect: a cognitive shift in awareness reported by some astronauts during spaceflight, often while viewing the Earth from outer space. Those who have experienced it describe a new understanding of the uniqueness, fragility, and relative smallness of our one and only home. And while it’s easy to imagine the impact this must have; it seems that spaceflight is a prerequisite. Which is why we sat down with Karen Nyberg.
A core principle of sustainability is future-proofing. Keeping items in use saves energy and reduces waste, as they’re thrown away or replaced less often. There are any number of ways to ensure a product doesn’t become obsolete. Durable materials. Timeless design. And OTA software updates, like the latest one available for Polestar 2.
The most innovative ideas are brought about through creative collaboration. Ideas that have the power to change; to revolutionise the status quo and spark social and environmental change. By connecting thoughts, experiences, skills, and intuition, visionary endeavours, like design, can be elevated from good to great.