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Electric vehicles have a host of benefits that their gas-powered counterparts can’t boast. Refinement is high on that list, and that makes separating EVs a difficult task. But what about EVs that share the same DNA? Polestar may be its own brand today, but its Volvo roots still show. Both the Polestar 2 and Volvo C40 Recharge look similar from the outside, but how do they compare?

Power is nearly identical

The 2023 Volvo C40 Recharge looks similar to the Polestar 2
Volvo C40 Recharge | Volvo

When equipped with the dual-motor long-range battery, both the Polestar 2 and Volvo C40 Recharge boast nearly identical performance figures. The Volvo makes 402 horsepower and 486 pound-feet of torque, while the Polestar churns out 408 ponies and 487 pound-feet of torque. Those scant differences are hardly noticeable in the real world, where both accelerate to 60 mph in the same 4.2 seconds.

Unlike the Volvo, however, the Polestar 2 is available with additional performance options. Add the Performance Pack and it becomes a canyon-carving weapon. Brembo sport brakes, adjustable Ohlins suspension, launch control, and increased motor performance make the Polestar 2 come alive. With 67 additional horsepower and 15 pound-feet of torque above the base dual-motor setup, it packs quite a punch.

More Range in the Polestar 2

2023 Polestar 2
2023 Polestar 2 | Polestar

In the all-important range test, the spinoff manages a better result than its original cousin. AT 260 miles, the newcomers manage nearly 40 additional miles from a full charge. The C40 Recharge can’t match that, offering just 226 miles of range in EPA testing. That difference is likely down to weight – the Polestar 2 weighs over 100 pounds less than the Volvo model.

Volvo C40 may be the more practical option

2023 Volvo C40 Recharge
2023 Volvo C40 Recharge | Volvo

Despite the disparity in range, the interior of the Volvo C40 Recharge makes it a more functional choice for everyday drives. There’s an impressive 24 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seats, while the Polestar offers just 15.5 cubes in its cargo compartment, according to Edmunds.

Rear legroom tips in favor of the Volvo as well, where backseat passengers get over 36 inches of legroom to work with. The new competition gives them just 33 inches of room – decent in many respects but clearly behind in this comparison.

However, the Polestar does claw back some favor when looking at headroom. It’s got 41.3 inches while the Volvo offers just 39, and even rear-seat passengers get an extra half inch of space up top.

Equal tech across the board

Inside, the Volvo connection shows between the C40 Recharge and Polestar 2. The google-based infotainment system sits on a vertical display and comes with all the same kit. From Google voice, maps, and music to the four-screen split layout option, the logo on the dash is all that separates these models.

Safety is near identical as well, with standard collision warning and pedestrian detection, plus Volvo’s unique suite of city-oriented ADAS features. Plus, Pilot Assist adds active lane centering to the adaptive cruise system to make highway drives a breeze.

2023 Polestar 2 EV
2023 Polestar 2 | Polestar

The choice is between interior space and performance

All told, the only difference between the Polestar 2 and C40 Recharge is philosophy. Do you want more interior space, or do the range and performance of the Polestar mean more? Other than that, both are excellent examples of what an EV can be.

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