The FIA World Touring Car Championship 2011 season is launched this weekend at Curitiba, Brazil, signaling the start of evaluation season for Polestar Racing. In 2010, Volvo Car Corporation gave Polestar Racing the green light to launch a one-car program for the WTCC 2011 as a commercial and technical evaluation ahead of 2012. Christian Dahl, Managing Director of Polestar Racing, said that Polestar is initially not focusing on results but rather on preparing a base that it could build on for 2012.
The Polestar Racing-prepared Volvo C30 DRIVe is a proven winner with victories in the Scandinavian and Swedish Touring Car Championships.
However, development work and new engine regulations are needed for the new WTCC tracks. Dahl said they are starting the season with the current two liter engine, before switching to an all-new 1.6 turbo engine later in 2011, based on an entirely new Volvo engine family.
Robert Dahlgren will be on the grid with the 2011 specification Volvo C30 DRIVe. The first race of 2011 is going to showcase a new livery of the Volvo C30 DRIVe racing car, which is painted in the distinctive Polestar-blue and is also featured on the Volvo C30 Polestar concept prototype.
Polestar has been racing partners with Volvo, allowing it to build both experience and expertise in optimizing Volvo vehicles for performance. Its double win in the 2009 Swedish Touring Car Championship has prompted STCC Polestar’s management to promptly put that expertise and experience to use by developing the road-going concept car using knowledge gained from the C30 and its race data.
At the star of the project, it was considered as a symbol and a communication platform for expanding the Polestars brand and for its decision to offer products for road-going Volvo vehicles. It was aimed at coming to a decision to give a team of racing engineers and drivers the liberty to design and develop the best road-going version of the C30, a race car they perfected after thousands of hours of work.
One of the team’s primary objectives was to convert the C30 to all wheel drive by employing a Haldex gen 4 system and Quiafe limited slip differentials on the front and the rear. They also equipped the vehicle with a Volvo T5 2.5 turbo engine that has been tried and tested for providing enough power for an emotional and reliable drive in any driving conditions. Moreover, exterior design and aerodynamics were improved by Polestar’s race car testing in Volvo Cars wind tunnel and by an upgraded suspension in collaboration with race teams partner Öhlins.
Taking care of the stopping power are Brembo brakes. Its interior employs only the highest level of materials, considering performance, function and appropriateness as main factors for choosing them. Leather for the cabin comes courtesy of Polestar partner Tarnsjo Garveri, thereby resulting to a functional yet welcoming interior.
With all these modifications, Polestar was able to create its own version of the C30 that could offer the needed elements either for a performance-laden drive or for a comfortable long-distance trip. The resulting creation was a true Grand Touring car that fuses motorsport-derived performance and efficiency and comfortable luxury derived from the use of high level materials and solutions.