Electric Vehicles

Polestar 1's all-electric range falls well-short of expectations

The Polestar 1 coupe is slated to start being delivered to customers in 2021.

Photo courtesy of Polestar

The Polestar 1 is the automaker's first fully branded automobile since Polestar was made into an independent manufacturer. The performance coupe shined with the expectation of delivering a hybrid, engaging drive when it debuted in 2017.

It was initially said that the plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV) powertrain of the Polestar 1 could achieve up to 150 km (93 miles) of all-electric range (NDEC). According to the Environmental Protection Agency, that promise falls well-short of reality.

The Polestar 1 is powered by a hybrid powertrain that utilizes a supercharged and turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine from the Volvo XC90 T8 and matches it with two electric motors that power the rear wheels. There is a 34.0-kilowatt-hour battery.

2020 Polestar 1 battery The car comes equipped with a 34-kilowatt-hour battery.Photo courtesy of Polestar

According to the automaker, the car has a power output is 600 horsepower and 737 pound-feet of torque. Polestar says that the car can get to 100 km/hm off the line in 4.2 seconds.

According to EPA estimates, the car has an all-electric range of 52 miles and a total range of 470 miles. That electric range is only 55 percent of what was promised originally and is eight miles shorter than what Polestar has listed as the range on their U.S.-facing website.

Those numbers are good for 58 MPGe and 26 mpg combined out of the 15.9-gallon gas tank.

2020 Polestar 1 website Polestar's website currently claims the model gets 60 miles of range after initially saying it would have 93 miles of all-electric capability.Inset image courtesy of Polestar

The comparable 2020 BMW 530e has just 21 miles of all-electric range and 350 miles of overall range (12.1-gallon gas tank). It's priced at just one-third the price of the Polestar 1. The Mercedes-Benz S560e has 19 miles of all-electric range but a 510-mile overall range (21.1-gallon gas tank). It is only 70-percent the cost of the Polestar 1.

Despite having a plug-in powertrain, the EPA estimates that the average owner of the Polestar 1 and BMW 530e will spend $500 more in fuel costs over five years compared to the average new vehicle. The average Mercedes-Benz S560e owner will spend $1,250 more.

EPA Polestar 1 Image courtesy of the Environmental Protection Agency

The Polestar 1 is on sale for $155,000. The company will make just 1,500 units of the Polestar 1, at the rage of 500 per year for the next three years. The first deliveries are slated to take place in early 2021.

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New plug-in hybrid SUV

2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe starts at $59,495

The Grand Cherokee 4xe is premium, inside and out.

Jeep/Stellantis

Last year, Jeep electrified the Wrangler, its most iconic model, with an innovative plug-in hybrid powertrain (PHEV). Not long after, the brand announced a similar version of the Grand Cherokee. The upscale electrified off-roader offers plenty of standard tech and features, solid safety equipment, and 25 miles of all-electric range. Today, Jeep announced pricing for the SUV, which will start arriving in dealers this spring.

2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe The 4xe powertrain delivers up to 25 miles of all electric range. Jeep/Stellantis

Pricing for the 4xe lineup starts at:

  • Grand Cherokee 4xe: $59,495
  • Grand Cherokee Trailhawk 4xe: $64,280
  • Grand Cherokee Overland 4xe: $67,555
  • Grand Cherokee Summit 4xe: $71,615
  • Grand Cherokee Summit Reserve 4xe: $76,095
The Grand Cherokee 4xe comes with a turbocharged 2.0-,item inline-four that combines with two electric motors for a total output of 375 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque. The 4xe powertrain includes plug-in hybrid technology, which enables all-electric driving. In the Grand Cherokee, there's up to 25 miles of electric range, which could enable a completely gas-free ownership experience for people with short commutes. Once the electric range is exhausted the vehicle functions like a normal hybrid, and the batteries must be recharged to replenish range.

2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe The Grand Cherokee joins the Wrangler 4xe in Jeep's electrified lineup.Jeep/Stellantis

Fortunately, the 4xe's premium starting price buys a premium SUV, even at the base level. Standard features include Capri leather upholstery, a 10.1-inch touchscreen and 10.25-inch passenger display. A dual-pane panoramic moonroof and heated power seats are also standard. A full suite of advanced safety systems come standard as well. All 4xe trims come with full-speed forward collision warnings, blind spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alerts, adaptive cruise control, lane departure alerts, LED headlights, and more.

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Electric vehicle production

GM outlines huge investment in new EV production

The $7 billion number is GM's largest single investment to date.

General Motors

Automakers are not shy about their plans to electrify their vehicle lineups. In fact, it's just the opposite, as most can't wait to release a media kit that sings the virtues of moving toward electrification and outlines their commitments to investing billions to make the move a reality. General Motors has been more active than most, building new facilities and revamping existing factories to handle new-age EV manufacturing. Today, the auto giant announced a further investment to build a new plant and overhaul the Orion Township facility in Michigan. The move creates thousands of jobs and positions GM as an early powerhouse in the EV race.

GM EV investment. GM says its new and existing facilities will create and retain thousands of jobs.General Motors

The $7 billion investment is slated for four Michigan manufacturing facilities. GM says the move will create 4,000 new jobs and retain 1,000 existing positions, and notes that the amount represents the single largest investment in company history. A new Ultium Cells battery plant in Lansing is part of the deal, along with the conversion of the GM assembly planting Orion Township. Orion will eventually house production of the upcoming Chevrolet Silverado EV and the electric GMC Sierra, making it the second of GM's facilities dedicated to building electric pickup trucks.

The Orion and Ultium Cells Lansing facilities will help GM boost its total full-size electric truck production to 600,000 units per year when both Factory Zero and Orion are in full swing. Though Ford sells more full-size trucks than Chevy or GMC individually, GM notes that the two combined move more trucks per year than The Blue Oval. The two plants join General Motors' existing EV-ready facilities that include Factory Zero in Detroit-Hamtramck, Spring Hill Assemble in Tennessee, CAMI in Ontario, and the Ramos Arizpe Assembly facility in Mexico.

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