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Polestar Design Competition 2020

Ben Parker

An image from the Polestar Precept Teasers

Credit Polestar

Article Highlights

Polestar once again has started its annual design competition which calls for designers around the world to envision a new Polestar design for 20 years from now. The goal for those submitting is to follow Polestar’s design principles, pure, progressive, and performance. The competition yields some exciting futuristic designs. We’ll collect submissions, and keep updating information regarding the competition here on this page.

*Update* Winners have been announced you can find them here

The Brief (from their website)


Design a new Polestar that is the purest of designs, one from twenty years from now, which showcases what Polestar’s slightly-more-distant future will look like (but still within the realm of possibility).

It could be a car. It could be something else. What it has to be is a vision of Polestar's design evolution in the year 2040, following the Polestar design philosophy.

Polestar’s Design Philosophy


Minimal decoration, with everything unnecessary removed and a focus on the technology within.


Unique, distinctive design which steers away from tradition and looks to new influences for inspiration.


Advanced technical innovation which makes for an elevated, holistic driving experience that is about more than just straight-line acceleration.

The father of Danish furniture design Kaare Klint.

Arne Jacobsen sitting in his famous egg chair.

Some Things to Consider

These are just my thoughts, I’m in no way affiliated with Polestar

Polestar’s History

Before making performance package Volvos the Polestar name was known in the racing world. Polestar began as a racing brand that engineered race cars. Their initial goal was just to build a racecar to win the Swedish Touring Car Championship. They’ve gone on to do much more than that since then, but at their core and in their ethos is the spirit of performance. Every car they get their hands on needs to be precisely engineered and have maximum output. 

After being purchased by Volvo, Polestar was able to pair its detail-oriented engineering focus to Volvo’s design first mentality. This marriage has led to the Polestar 1 and Polestar 2, and now the Polestar Precept.

Polestar’s Future

Going forward Polestar has increased its messaging around sustainability in design. Their future products (most likely) will be made to use little energy, be self-sustaining, and be made of composite recycled materials. The Precept concept is evidence of their sustainable future you can read more about here. It should also be considered all of the many pieces of infrastructure needed to support future modes of transportation, think Tesla Supercharger, Tesla Powerwall, etc. What are we going to need in 20 years to support our transportation infrastructure? 

Scandinavian Roots

The Polestar is a reference to the North star that Vikings and other seamen would use to navigate their way at night. Polestar is very proud of its Scandinavian roots and their designs are evidence of that. 

Scandinavian Art & Design

It definitely could be argued that without Scandinavian design we would never end up with the iPhone. If I were to enter I’d consider looking into a few of the following artists and designers as a reference. 

Kaare Klint is widely known as the father of Danish furniture design which since he created has remained largely popular. What made Klint so iconic was clean, pure lines, and excellent craftsmanship. 

Arne Jacobsen is another Scandinavian furniture designer who focused on simple pure form. His most notable design is the famous egg chair, which is still manufactured and widely sold today. 

The works and writings of Poul Henningsen may be another place to find your inspiration. Poul’s famous lamp pieces were inspired by and mimic the natural world using simple lines and abstractions of natural shapes. 

A more contemporary influence could be Olafur Eliasson who explores a myriad of form factors and mediums to do his work. All still resemble and feel rooted in Scandiavian design and art.


Do whatever you’d like! Make something new, exciting, and beautiful. Make it something that you’ve never seen before. Push the boundaries of what Polestar means and is. Make something that you’d like to use or own. Keep the philosophy of Polestar up front, and reference your decisions off of that.

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The writer, commentator, and designer Poul Henningsen with some of his famous lamp designs.

Olafur Eliasson's "The Unspeakable Openness of Things" Exhibit circa 2018