New Polestar software upgrade boosts rear-wheel torque to 2019 Volvos

It appears to only be available in the UK for now, but it'd be nice if the upgrade made its way Stateside.

Andrew Krok Reviews Editor / Cars
Cars are Andrew's jam, as is strawberry. After spending years as a regular ol' car fanatic, he started working his way through the echelons of the automotive industry, starting out as social-media director of a small European-focused garage outside of Chicago. From there, he moved to the editorial side, penning several written features in Total 911 Magazine before becoming a full-time auto writer, first for a local Chicago outlet and then for CNET Cars.
Andrew Krok
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The new V60 is already a great drive, so this new Polestar upgrade should make a good car even better.


Polestar might have spun off to become its own brand with its own vehicles, but it's still lending its tuning expertise to new Volvo vehicles.

Volvo announced today that it will release a new Polestar software update for a variety of new Volvo vehicles with all-wheel drive. The software will increase the amount of torque sent to the rear wheels, in addition to the frequency with which the torque is distributed rearward. It kicks in when the vehicle is put in Dynamic mode, or when the stability control is turned off.

The automaker says the upgrade will improve cornering and traction when exiting corners, in addition to enhancing the steering turn-in. This builds upon a previously available Polestar upgrade that boosted throttle response, hastened gear changes, tweaked shift points and overall engine output. That update came out in July 2017 and ramped up the XC60 T8 plug-in hybrid's output from 407 horsepower to 421.

The new software can be applied to every new all-wheel-drive Volvo vehicle built on the CMA and SPA platforms, with the exception of plug-in hybrids, which already have additional rear torque bias. Thus, this upgrade covers Volvo's 90 series (, , ), 60 series (, , XC60) and the . Polestar's tweaks remain covered under the factory warranty, as well.

Sadly, neither update is yet available in the US. Volvo didn't immediately return a request for comment, but I imagine that if the demand is there, and if the upgrades conform to federal vehicle standards, it shouldn't be too difficult to bring it Stateside. People are well and truly digging performance SUVs these days. 

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