Car Design News was in Munich for the reveal of the Polestar Synergy concept, a full-size model that is the result of a unique multi-team collaboration
Away from the hubbub of the IAA Mobility show, Polestar was making its own splash with the Synergy concept. Revealed behind closed doors in a quiet spot in the eastern suburbs of Munich, the Synergy is the result of Polestar’s latest design contest and combines the work of three separate designers out of more than 600 entries.
While the model took centre stage on the evening, the real story here is around collaboration. The Polestar Design team worked closely with the winners over the course of six months, turning what the brand describes as “three distinct dreams” into “one cohesive reality.” And this spirit of collaboration underpins the Design Contest from the outset, drawing on the active Polestar Design Community on social media to drive interest and engagement but also draw in useful feedback.
The brief for this year was to create a future Polestar vehicle that focuses on “the experience of performance” with an advanced technical story that is, of course, sustainable too. Ten designs made the shortlist, before two exterior and one interior designs were selected. Indeed, the name ‘Synergy’ feels particularly fitting in this respect, bringing together complementary designs in a first for the competition. To indulge the metaphorical sense, this is almost a physical embodiment of teamwork in the design process.
Indeed, it was the collaborative aspect of the contest that was celebrated by Polestar CEO Thomas Ingenlath on the evening: “Their vision and the teamwork with our designers has resulted in a truly gorgeous car.” Polestar head of design, Maximilian Missoni, is of a similar opinion, stating that “the story is as much about collaboration as performance.”
The designers in question are celebrated by the car itself, with their names and nationalities displayed on the bodyside. The winning exterior designers were Devashish Deshmukh and Swapnil Desai, who are both based in Paris but originate from India. The central thesis was inspired by the look of a hammerhead shark, but also Desai’s idea for “emotional durability” with materials that age gracefully over time. The interior design came from Yingxiang Li, who is based in China, and followed the theme of “floating comfort and control.”
The car is visually striking from practically every angle, with the iconic Dual Blade headlight design integrating directly into the front wings, following a line that continues seamlessly towards the centre of the car before cutting off abruptly. Here we can see the camera-based wing mirrors, which are housed in those imposing wheel arches, already technical in their design with a gaping air vent beneath.
At the B-pillar, the waist appears to shrink dramatically with a body side that sits well within the front and rear arches. From the side profile the shoulder line wraps around the car almost like a yacht, disguising a fast roofline that falls into the shallow rear mask. A wide, flat rear wing combines with a thin LED tailight.
Sitting extremely low to the ground at just 1.07 metres tall and 4.56 metres long, its stretched proportions could easily have resulted in a bullet-like form; it is impressive to see how such an intricate design was achieved. Inside, and the cabin is accessed by a clamshell roof that flips forward from a hinge at the cowl. A central seating position, simple widescreen display and a steering wheel that is half-yoke-half-traditional combine for a driver-focussed experience.
Work like this is testament to how the next generation of designers are already able to work together and merge initially distinct ideas for the greater good, looking beyond individual accolades and toward an exceptional product. We were pleased to see all three designers on hand in Munich to discuss the Synergy in person, and look forward to seeing how it is received as it begins a tour of Polestar locations around the US, starting in California on 7 October.
At the same time, Polestar is kicking off a partnership with Mattel, where Hot Wheels designs will provide the inspiration for the next Polestar Design Contest. It will also see Polestar’s production vehicles being immortalised as Hot Wheels and Matchbox collectibles in the future.