Among Super Bowl Car Commercials, Americans May Ask: What’s a Polestar?

The Volvo-owned, Tesla-fighting electric car company makes its big pitch

The Polestar 2, an electric car from Volvo and Geely-owned brand Polestar. The car company is running an ad during the Super Bowl, which will be the first time many Americans will have heard of them.
Polestar is about to become a household name.

Arnold Schwarzenegger and Salma Hayek as Zeus and Hera for BMW, Eugene Levy and a cadre of famous co-stars for Nissan and the Joneses (that’s Tommy Lee Jones, Leslie Jones and Rashida Jones) for Toyota — these are just some of the blockbuster car commercials you’ll be seeing during this year’s Super Bowl. 

Then there’s Polestar. Who? That’s a question many Americans will be asking.

While most Super Bowl car ads are household brands employing the talents of household names, Polestar — which sold around 29,000 cars in 2021 — has announced it will be airing a 30-second spot in the first quarter of Sunday’s game, ostensibly relying not on A-list actors but on the strength of the brand it’s building. “Staying true to Polestar’s minimalist brand identity, the graphical ad is visually simple, allowing punchy words in white on black to share the message,” the company said.

If this is the first time you’re hearing about Polestar, there are a few key things to know. First, they make electric vehicles. They first came onto the scene as a standalone automaker in 2017 with the Polestar 1, a limited-edition luxury hybrid limited to 1,500 models. Since then they’ve expanded to include the all-electric Polestar 2, a spacious and much more affordable hatchback. And now, the company, which is owned by Volvo and Geely, is looking to seriously take on Tesla in the EV space. 

When our automotive editor reviewed the Polestar 2 in June 2021, he called it “an absolute rocket” and “a must-try option for those tired of having to choose between one bulky crossover and the next.” He had some qualms, including the $59,900 starting price that far eclipsed the Tesla Model 3 at the time. But since then, Polestar has become more competitive with the first name in EVs: the Polestar 2 is now available in a more affordable single-motor option ($45,900 starting price), and even the dual-motor, all-wheel drive option he tested has since received a $10,000 price cut ($49,900 starting price). For reference, a single-motor Tesla Model 3 starts at $44,990 and the dual-motor, AWD version starts at $50,990. 

While we don’t know what exactly the Polestar ad will look like just yet (they have released a teaser), we do know that the company is looking to do more than simply raise the profile of its first all-electric car. Last year they committed to releasing three new vehicles over the next three years, starting with the Polestar 3, their first SUV, sometime in 2022. Additionally, “Polestar also intends to list on the Nasdaq in a proposed business combination with Gores Guggenheim, Inc. (Nasdaq: GGPI, GGPIW, and GGPIU),” the company wrote in a press release, “which is expected to close in the first half of 2022.”

In other words, this is going to be a big year for Polestar. And it’s all starting with the big game.

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