Volvo Isn't Chasing Polestar's Rear-Windowless Design

Volvo Isn't Chasing Polestar's Rear-Windowless Design photo
Volvo Isn't Chasing Polestar's Rear-Windowless Design photo

Given Polestar's status as a relatively new car company, it can afford to be bold. The brand proved that with the Polestar 1, its jaw-dropping debut coupe that doesn't get enough love if you ask me. It's done it again with the Polestar 4, a 544-horsepower electric crossover that looks slick but... has no rear window. That's cool, Polestar can do what it wants, but its sister company Volvo isn't following suit.

Erik Severinson, head of new car strategy at Volvo, told The Drive as much during a recent event in Sweden. When asked if the famously safe automaker would try something as bold as eliminating the rear window from its cars, Severinson turned down the notion of commenting on Polestar's design direction. "I think they have reasons for doing that and they have obviously addressed the different questions you’re asking as well," Severinson said.

“From our side we are quite confident," he continued. "We have our cars today and the ones we have revealed so far, and we will always make sure we are fulfilling the brand identity of Volvo from a design perspective. And also, of course, all the safety aspects.”

Sometimes, stylistic statements get in the way. We've seen form obstruct function more and more lately in the automotive space—the Tesla Cybertruck and its sharp edges spring to mind. And while it can be neat at times to see manufacturers step outside the box, their most polarizing products can be hamstrung by hubris, as my coworker Maddox Kay puts it.


There's no way to spec a Polestar 4 with the back glass. Instead, the brand fits a rear-facing camera to fill the visibility gap. Doing this provides a "spacious passenger environment" with an "extended panoramic roof," which maybe sounds cooler than it is. Still, that's Polestar's reasoning for deleting the rear window.

It tracks that Volvo wouldn't want to sacrifice practicality and, potentially, safety by following Polestar down the same path. Volvo is happy to stick with tradition in that sense. Severinson concluded, “The cars we have revealed so far have a rearview window if I put it that way. And we’re quite happy with the design we have in our vehicles.”

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