We’re putting the BYD Seal up against the well-established Polestar 2
Another car from the car manufacturer you’ve never heard of, the much awaited BYD Seal has finally arrived in the UK.
But how does it face up to one of its well-known rivals, the Polestar 2?
As the automotive industry shifts towards sustainability, these two models really stand out, each bringing a unique set of features to the table.
In our review, we’ll delve into the design, performance, technology, and overall driving experience offered by the BYD Seal and the Polestar 2, exploring how they shape the future of electric mobility.
The BYD Seal is available in two trim levels, Design and Excellence, which are offered with a few different battery size choices.
There are six colours available on both trim levels: Polar White, Space Black, Ice Blue, Atlantis Grey, Indigo Grey and Shadow Green. The Indigo Grey and Shadow Green cost almost an extra £900.
The Polestar 2 has four trim levels: the Standard range Single motor, the Long range Single motor, the Long range Dual motor and the Long range Dual motor with Performance pack.
Likewise, the Polestar 2 is also available in six colours: Magnesium, Snow, Thunder, Jupiter, Midnight and Space. But only the Magnesium grey is available as standard, so you’ll have to come up with an extra £900 if you fancy any of the other colours.
Design and Interior
Starting with design, both the BYD Seal and the Polestar 2 showcase a commitment to modernity and sustainability.
The BYD Seal is rather sporty looking, with its sleek, aerodynamic profile, the Seal exudes a sense of understated elegance. The smooth lines and minimalist style contribute to a sophisticated look that blends seamlessly with its eco-friendly ethos.
The mesmerising cascading light bar that runs from one end to the other at the rear of the vehicle adds a futuristic flair to the Seal’s aesthetic.
The Polestar 2 also adopts a minimalist design, but has quite a muscular stance. The distinctive Thor’s hammer LED headlights make quite a strong visual statement too.
Much like the BYD Seal, the Polestar 2 manages to strike a balance between sportiness and sophistication, so both are models that would appeal to drivers seeking a combination of performance and style.
Boasting a spacious interior with high-quality materials, the BYD Seal provides a comfortable haven for drivers and passengers alike. The minimalist dashboard design is complemented by a large touchscreen interface, offering intuitive control over various vehicle functions.
The beautiful panoramic sun roof also comes as standard with BYD. Yes, you read that right. Which also makes the interior feel even bigger than it already is.
The Polestar 2 elevates the in-cabin experience with a premium interior that seamlessly blends luxury and sustainability.
The animal welfare traced Nappa leather upholstery underline Polestar’s commitment to eco-conscious manufacturing.
Unfortunately you don’t get a panoramic roof as standard in the Polestar 2 unless you want to splash out on the Plus pack (an extra £4,000!).
The BYD Seal comes with heated seats and a heated steering wheel as standard which are essentials for those frosty morning commutes.
And trust us, you won’t ever want a car without these warming features once you’ve tried them!
Heated front seats also come as standard in the Polestar 2. And if you want your rear passengers to have toasty derrieres as well, then you can opt for the Plus pack for that extra bit of luxury.
Considering BYD has developed many of the UK’s iPads, you practically have a highly responsive 15.6 inch tablet as your infotainment touchscreen. You can rotate it to portrait mode or landscape to suit different activities.
The central display is joined by a large driver display and if you opt for the Excellence specification, you’ll get a colour head-up display.
There are two wireless charging trays up front and some USB ports in the back too, located behind the centre console cubby.
The BYD Seal is available with a large range of safety features. In fact, the Chinese car has already been awarded the maximum five-star safety score from Euro NCAP.
It’s equipped with the innovative CTB (cell-to-body) technology which integrates the infamous Blade Battery into the vehicle’s body, greatly improving the BYD Seal’s safety, stability, handling and performance.
The Polestar 2’s infotainment system is centered around a vertically oriented 11.2 inch touchscreen display (a bit smaller than the Seal’s), creating a focal point that’s both functional and visually striking. And when it comes to entertainment, you get a decent audio system and it’s compatible with both Apple music and Spotify.
You get an even bigger driver display, which is ideal for being kept informed during your drive. It measures up to 12.3 inches and even has a navigation mode which displays the route map and directions.
Packed with the latest protective and preventative technology, including parking sensors and a blind-spot information system, the Polestar 2 is ready to keep you and your passengers safe and has also been awarded five stars by Euro NCAP.
When it comes to performance, both the BYD Seal and the Polestar 2 prove their mettle on the road.
The BYD Seal is equipped with a powerful electric motor that delivers swift acceleration and a smooth, responsive driving experience. It takes just 3.8 seconds for the sporty saloon to reach 62mph.
Its regenerative braking system further enhances efficiency, capturing and converting energy back into the battery during deceleration – though there’s an absence of steering wheel paddles, you have to find the setting within the touchscreen instead.
Polestar, a subsidiary of Volvo, brings its renowned engineering prowess to the forefront in the Polestar 2. The dual electric motors in particular provide all-wheel drive and impressive acceleration.
It takes four seconds for the Polestar 2 to go from 0-60mph, so there’s not too much difference to the BYD Seal’s acceleration figure.
But the Polestar 2 isn’t just about speed; it’s about precision and control. Keyless entry means all you need to do is prod the break and you’ll be able to drive off immediately.
The adaptive suspension system adapts to driving conditions, ensuring a comfortable ride without compromising on sporty handling.
Electric Range and Charging
An electric vehicle is only as good as its charging capabilities, and both the BYD Seal and the Polestar 2 address this crucial aspect.
Both models are compatible with fast-charging stations, allowing drivers to replenish the battery quickly during pit stops.
The Polestar 2 has a claimed range of up to 406 miles, while the BYD SEAL is capable of 354 miles. So, you get just over 50 miles extra if you opt for the Polestar 2 but both ranges are fairly impressive and will suit anyone who drives far often.
The BYD SEAL can be charged from 30% to 80% in a speedy 26 minutes by using a 150kW DC charger. Polestar claim their rival can charge from 10-80% in 28 minutes when using a 205kW DC charger.
Space and Practicality
Starting with the BYD Seal, this electric saloon boasts a surprisingly spacious interior that defies its compact exterior dimensions.
The thoughtful design and efficient use of space provide ample room for both passengers and cargo. The rear seats are comfortable, offering sufficient legroom and headroom for even taller passengers.
The BYD Seal’s practicality doesn’t really extend to its boot space; there’s 402 litres to play with which isn’t that competitive but it’s enough for your food shop and a couple of large suitcases. There’s also a frunk, perfect for storing your charging cables.
The Polestar 2’s crossover design translates into a more elevated driving position and increased cargo capacity. The boot measures up to 405 litres, so it just beats the BYD Seal here but not by a lot.
The rear seats offer a comfortable experience, with the option to fold them down to accommodate larger items. This emphasis on practicality positions the Polestar 2 as a versatile vehicle suitable for various lifestyles, from city living to weekend adventures.
Price inevitably plays a crucial role in the decision-making process.
The Polestar 2, positioned as a premium electric vehicle, commands a higher price tag. So, for those willing to invest in a top-tier electric vehicle, the Polestar 2 promises several different comprehensive packages that extend beyond basic transportation.
The Polestar 2 starts at £44,950 if you opt for the standard trim, but the price increases up to £57,950 for the top of the spec trim level.
The BYD Seal is known for offering competitive pricing in the EV market, presenting an attractive option for budget-conscious buyers seeking a reliable and efficient EV without breaking the bank.
The BYD Seal starts at £45,640 for the standard Design trim and rises to £48,640 for the top of the line Excellence model.
The Seal may seem pricey for a brand that is still highly unknown in the UK, but it comes packed with lots of kit as standard, some of which you’ll have to pay so much more extra for with most of its competitors.
In summary, the BYD Seal and Polestar 2 excel in providing practical electric driving experiences.
Whether it’s the BYD Seal’s surprisingly spacious design or the Polestar 2’s crossover versatility, both models address the space and practicality considerations that are essential for today’s discerning drivers.
Choosing between the BYD Seal and the Polestar 2 ultimately depends on individual preferences, priorities, and budget considerations.
Whether seeking an entry-level electric vehicle that delivers on performance or opting for a premium driving experience with all the bells and whistles, these two models showcase the diverse offerings in the ever-evolving world of electric mobility.