12 Most Common Polestar 2 Problems (Explained)

The Polestar 2 is a sleek and upscale EV from Volvo’s performance sub-brand that was first released in 2020.

It has the presence, quickness and handling of a compact sports sedan, but also offers the practicality and ride height of a typical crossover.

In this article, we’ll take a look at the most common problems and complaints Polestar 2 owners have to get a better idea of what it’s like to own and live with long-term.

1. TCAM Issues

The most common problem that Polestar 2 owners have reported since its release has to do with its TCAM or Telematics and Connectivity Antenna Module.

As the name implies, the TCAM handles all of the car’s networking and communication features such as:

  • GPS and navigation
  • Cellular connection and data
  • Wi-Fi
  • Bluetooth
  • Key fob

TCAM issues can cause an assortment of problems which include:

  • No Internet connection
  • Key fob and Phone-as-Key (PAK) aren’t recognized
  • Inaccurate GPS location
  • SOS eCall error on the dash
  • SOS light blinking red 

“No problems for three months and ~ 3500 mi. Last weekend, got in the car for an errand a couple of miles away, got out of the car and it wouldn’t lock, and when I got back in I had the ‘SOS eCall’ and ‘Key not Found’ messages. I was able to drive it by putting the key in the cup holder.”

Despite the number of owner complaints, TCAM issues only affect a small percentage of vehicles sold — and those who have had problems only experience symptoms very rarely.

If you are having connectivity issues, restarting the main screen by holding down the home button can be a quick fix. If this doesn’t work, restart the TCAM by holding down the windshield defroster button for about 20 seconds until the SOS light flashes red. 

You can also ‘hard reset’ the TCAM by disconnecting the 12-volt battery and unplugging the TCAM’s backup battery which is stored behind the driver side C-piilar’s plastic trim piece in the back.

Many owners also report that the TCAM issues eventually go away after waiting a few hours or even up to a few days. 

In some cases, dealerships have to replace the TCAM or update its software to get everything working again.

2. Propulsion System Error

More than a few Polestar 2 owners have complained about a ‘Propulsion System’ error popping up on the dash.

When this occurs, the car usually goes into ‘limp’ mode and only allows you to drive at really low speeds. Others report that the car drives fine even with the error on the dash — though the car might jerk and stutter along the way. But in some cases, the car won’t move at all and you’ll need to get a tow. 

For some people, the error goes away on its own after turning off the car and waiting a while to turn it back on — and the car will work as if nothing ever happened.

“Happened to me twice but the car wouldn’t move at all for about 5 minutes, then acted all normal and happy. First time they updated some internal software. Second time they replaced the high voltage battery disconnect unit. Works splendidly since then.”

Cars with more persistent propulsion system issues usually have faulty hardware and need to be taken back to the dealer.

In most cases, one of the following parts need to be replaced:

  • Battery Disconnect Unit
  • Inverter
  • Electric motor or drive unit

These are essential parts of the EV powertrain so they’re covered by an 8-year/100,000-mile warranty. In some states, like California, the EV powertrain warranty goes up to 10-years/150,000-miles.

3. No Sound from Speakers

Many Polestar 2 owners have intermittent issues where the speaker system suddenly stops working.

When this happens, not only does the infotainment system’s audio go completely silent, but also the turn signals, parking sensors, and other sound alerts as well.

“While I was listening to a song through my iPhone, the audio suddenly dropped out. I restarted the phone and reconnected it to the car. Still no audio. Then I used my turn signal and that had no sound either.”

Most people who have this issue are able to get the sound working again by holding down the infotainment system’s home button to reboot it. Another solution that usually works is to put the car to ‘sleep’ by turning it off, locking the doors and letting it sit for roughly 30 minutes.

4. Backup Camera Issues

A common complaint among Polestar 2 owners is the camera’s poor image quality and random issues with it not turning on when it’s needed.

Aside from the low resolution of the backup camera, you also have to wait a few seconds before the backup camera starts showing an image on the screen — especially if the car has been sitting overnight. On top of this, the image can switch on and off as you’re backing up. It’s also not uncommon for people to see an error saying that the camera is unavailable.

Owners have also been annoyed with the fact that the cameras turn off automatically when the vehicle stops moving for a few seconds. They have to keep pressing the camera button to turn it back on.

Cleaning the camera can improve the image a little bit, but it’s still lacking when compared to the camera systems in other vehicles.

Polestar 2 owners who’ve had issues with camera delays and error messages say that an infotainment reboot can sometimes help get it back to working order.

5. Aggressive Lane Keeping Aid

Many owners and professional reviewers have noted that the Polestar 2’s Lane Keeping Aid (LKA) feature can be overly aggressive and jerky.

The car will sometimes dart or ‘ping pong’ between lane markers unexpectedly which can catch you off guard if you’re not paying attention. It also tends to stick to the one side of the road a little too much even when it’s working normally.

The lane assist can easily get confused by:

  • Inconsistent/unclear lane markers
  • On/off ramps
  • Turn lanes
  • Really narrow roads
  • Construction zones
  • Bad weather

In addition, it will sometimes not turn the wheel enough when taking on curves and you have to take over to slow down and steer in the right direction. 

You can turn off the lane assist completely in the vehicle settings if you find that it’s too unreliable. Long-term owners have noticed improvements with the lane assist feature when upgrading to the latest software. 

6. AC Issues

Another common issue with the Polestar 2 is its noisy AC compressor which can sometimes emit a noticeable hum accompanied by some vibrations. Cars equipped with heat pumps can also have excessive noise and vibrations.

This issue usually occurs when the AC compressor is working extra hard right after the car has been fast charged or if the weather is extremely hot.

“On my drives home from work in 98° plus weather with AC on after about 10 minutes the loud humming noise kicks in and a slight floor vibration to boot. It’s bothersome after a while.”

Polestar have acknowledged the issue and redesigned the AC compressor bracket to dampen the noise. But owners of newer Polestar 2’s continue to complain of the noise, so it’s not been completely fixed.

Many owners have also noticed that the AC will intermittently stop blowing cold air and then come back on after a few minutes. This can occur multiple times during a long trip.

A common fix for this issue is to restart the infotainment system, which also controls the climate controls, by holding down the ‘Home’ button for a couple of seconds. Turning off ECO mode also improves the cooling significantly. 

Polestar has also updated some of the AC compressor’s components to try and fix this problem once and for all.

Related: How Long Will A Polestar 2 Last?

7. Charging Issues

Connecting to public charging stations like Electrify America can be a hit or miss with the Polestar 2.

Although all brand new Polestar 2s come with two years of complimentary charging at Electrify America stations, one of the most common complaints is that the car will simply not charge at all even if it’s properly connected. 

One workaround is to lift up the charging cable to make sure the connector is properly connected and ‘communicating’ with the car. But there are some instances where it’s the charging station itself that just doesn’t want to work with the car — especially if it’s an older model charger. 

Even if it does successfully charge, some have had issues where charging keeps stopping and restarting every 15 minutes or so.

Charging can also be really slow even if the car is at a low State of Charge (SOC) and the charging station is advertised as a 150 kW charger. Lots of people report that their car will have trouble reaching 100 kW and will quickly drop down and stay at 40 kW.

Disconnecting and plugging the charger in again can sometimes improve the charging rate.

8. Phone App Issues

The Polestar 2’s phone app has been criticized a lot because it’s very buggy and has limited functionality, especially when compared to apps from other car brands — even Volvo.

Some of the more common complaints include:

  • Limited features
  • Trouble connecting to the car
  • Frequently times out or logs out
  • Inaccurate vehicle location
  • Drains phone battery when running in background

The app has gotten a little better over time, but it still does not meet a lot of people’s expectations — especially those who have owned Tesla’s and other EVs in the past.

9. Sticking Rear Brakes

The Polestar 2’s rear brake pads can easily get stuck to the rotors and cause loud banging noises and shuddering.

This issue usually only happens when the rear brakes get wet and is left to sit for an extended period. It’s also exacerbated if you rely on one-pedal driving most of the time and hardly ever step on the brake pedal.

“I washed the car before Xmas and left it in my garage, only to find on using it yesterday that the rear brakes were stuck on. After a little throttle they disengaged, but now I have a constant thump thump noise coming from the rear whilst driving.”

One quick fix that’s often recommended is to speed up and slam on the brakes really hard. This will help get any excess brake pad material off the brake rotors.

If this doesn’t get rid of the banging and thumping, replacing the rear brake pads should make it go away completely.

10. Phantom Braking

Lots of Polestar 2 owners have been pretty annoyed by the car’s overly sensitive rear auto brake.

Although it’s an important safety feature, it can be easily triggered by walls, garage doors, speed bumps and inclines. 

“The rear auto brake is super sensitive, pretty much anything triggers it, and it is borderline violent when it does trigger. It’s best to turn it off, which needs to be done every time the car turns on. The option to turn on/off will come up when the camera is activated.”

Luckily, you can easily turn off the Rear Auto Brake feature in the vehicle settings. If you want to keep it enabled, but want to avoid triggering it unexpectedly, you’ll have to back up slower than you usually do.

11. Cup Holder Placement

A lot of Polestar 2 owners find that the single cupholder in the center console is not enough. It’s also not large enough for most people’s tastes.

There is a second cupholder just behind it, but you won’t be able to use the armrest if you want to safely store more than one drink at a time. The second cupholder also takes up a lot of storage space which is already quite limited.

Fortunately, there are lots of aftermarket cupholder options available, with some specifically designed for the Polestar 2.

12. Parts Availability

Since Polestar is a relatively new brand and Polestar Spaces are not very common, dealer concerns and parts availability is an issue and can leave you without a properly working car for extended periods of time.

“I had a cracked windshield due to a flying rock and I have been waiting for a replacement part since September. Also waiting for a new rear bumper after a rear ending accident and Polestar doesn’t even have a date for when parts will be available.”

Unfortunately, until the Polestar brand becomes more mainstream and Volvo dealerships become more acquainted with the vehicle’s issues, there is nothing much that can be done about the availability of parts.

Polestar does offer free rentals in case the car has to be worked on for an extended period of time, but this is not entirely acceptable for a lot of people. 

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Attractive styling
  • Excellent handling
  • Quick acceleration with dual motor variant
  • Good interior design
  • Good build quality
  • Lots of usable range
  • Filled with modern tech and driver aids

Cons

  • Parts availability
  • Limited dealer network
  • Software bugs and glitches
  • Less rear legroom than rivals
  • High starting price

What Do The Reviews Say?

“For the most part, we like the way the Polestar 2 drives, no matter how many motors it has. Single-motor models are front-wheel-drive. Our test car needed 7.2 seconds to get from 0 to 60 mph. That’s about 3 seconds slower than the Polestar 2 Dual Motor.”

“The Polestar 2 isn’t a large car, but it provides a decent amount of space for both front and rear passengers. The car’s small size makes getting in and out of tight parking spots relatively easy.”

“There are quite a few standard features like collision avoidance and lane departure warning, though some more advanced systems, including adaptive cruise control, are tied to certain packages.”

“We were pleasantly surprised when the Polestar 2 Single Motor exceeded its EPA estimate, driving 288 miles on a single charge on our real-world EV range test.”

“Polestar borrows a lot from sister company Volvo, giving it a distinctly European look and feel. The interior is stylish and simple, though the sea of black surfaces can be a bit drab after a while. All of the materials, even the plastic parts, have a more premium look and feel than what you’ll find in a Tesla.”

SOURCE: 2023 Polestar 2 | Edmunds

What’s the Resale Value of a Polestar 2?

Here’s a quick look at used car pricing on Edmunds at the time of writing. Prices quoted are for the Dual Motor, except for the 2021 model year which only had a Launch Edition variant.

YearMileagePrice
2023878$59,980
20224,083$47,950
202112,714$41,987

Author:

  • Ian Sawyer

    Growing up with a father who was a mechanic I had an appreciation for cars and motorcycles from an early age. I shared my first bike with my brother that had little more than a 40cc engine but it opened up a world of excitement for me, I was hooked. As I grew older I progressed onto bigger bikes and...

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