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Volvo and Polestar are Swedish automakers that produce sleek, sophisticated vehicles. While the former focuses on safe, family-oriented cars and SUVs, the latter concentrates on EVs with a performance kick. As of late, with electric vehicles on the rise, Polestar’s developing even more momentum.

Although the companies work under the same corporate umbrella, what’s the nature of their relationship, and how did it develop over time? Let’s look at Volvo and Polestar, both past and present, and how they’re related.

A brief history of the Volvo Corporation

As Companies History reports, Volvo manufactured its first vehicle in 1927. In the first year of production, the Gothenburg, Sweden plant produced only 280 cars. Yet, from there, the company kept growing, building a reputation for well-engineered, safe vehicles.

September 1, 1944, was a milestone for the company when it introduced the PV 444. As Volvo describes, the “little Volvo” helped launch the company into international markets. In only two weeks, 2,300 customers secured orders for the Swedish two-door. Then, in 1955, Volvo began exporting the PV 444 to the U.S., which, by 1974, became its largest market during that period.

However, the real story began in 1959. That’s when Volvo engineer Nihls Bohlin introduced the three-point safety belt, starting the brand’s storied history of safety innovations. For the benefit of all drivers, Volvo waived the patent, and all cars became safer.

In 2000, the Volvo Group sold Volvo Car Corporation to the Ford Motor Company. Then, in 2010, Chinese automaker Geely purchased the company. Today, Volvo continues its heritage of leading-edge safety and unique design. Now, as the EV age begins, the automaker continues to increase its all-electric offerings.

A brief history of the early Polestar brand

Swedish Touring Car champion Jan “Flash” Nilsson started Flash Engineering in 1996, which later became Polestar. Using Volvo models as a starting point, Flash Engineering won over 100 European races from 1996 to 2005. At that time, Nilsson sold the company to Christian Dahl, who renamed it Polestar Racing.

In its comprehensive history of Polestar, Evo notes the company remained separate from Volvo, with two unique departments: the road car division and the racing department. Over the years, the tuning company helped develop high-performance Volvos like the S60 and V60 Polestar with turbocharged engines and all-wheel drive. Unique styling bits gave these cars a racy appeal.

According to MotorTrend, in 2015, Volvo acquired the Polestar road car division, and the racing department continued under the Cyan name. Then, as Motor1 reports, Volvo Cars made Polestar its own brand in 2017, with a focus on innovative all-electric vehicles, with only the Polestar 1 being a hybrid model, followed by the all-electric Polestar 2 in 2019.

How the Polestar brand has branched away from Volvo

Today, Polestar produces sophisticated EVs unlike anything else. Blending Scandinavian design with leading technology, these Swedish electric vehicles set a new standard for looks and performance. Currently, the automaker produces three models: the Polestar 2 sedan, Polestar 3 SUV, and Polestar 4 SUV/Coupe. However, the Polestar 5 four-door GT and Polestar 6 roadster are in the works.

Jalopnik reports that Polestar and Volvo recently separated their design studios for even more differentiation between the brands. With each company having a distinct design language, that only made sense.

According to the company, its Polestar 0 goal aims to achieve climate-neutral manufacturing by 2030. With its futuristic Cube headquarters in Gothenburg, Sweden, to its vehicles’ singular design, it’s clear they’re a brand on the move.

Elsewhere, for Volvo drivers who want extra performance, Polestar Engineered Optimization and Polestar Engineered Parts bring enhanced dynamics.

Volvo and Polestar have a long history together. With both based in Sweden, their vehicles have a unique Scandinavian feel. Since Polestar became its own brand, the automaker has designed and produced EVs with singular looks and performance. Still, Volvo continues with sophisticated cars and SUVs with first-rate safety. Both companies make vehicles that stand out from the crowd.

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