While Polestar is still a young automobile company, the Gothenburg-based EV manufacturer's brand development has been working in overdrive. Delivering both the 1 and 2 stateside and aiming to deliver its upcoming 3 SUV by the end of 2023, Polestar's lineup is quickly expanding. But in August 2022, Polestar entered a venture with Candela, another Sweden-based electromobility firm. But this venture wasn't for a road vehicle, but rather a water-bound one. 

Candela is an electric boat manufacturer attempting to make electric boats more viable by offering highly efficient powertrains. As for electric cars, aerodynamics, weight, and powertrain efficiency are crucial to squeezing out the most range. But this formula isn't bespoke to cars; in fact, implementing these design techniques into other vehicles can yield similar efficiency gains. 

2024 Polestar 2

For Candela, its team knew that just putting batteries and an electric motor in a regular boat wouldn't suffice, so it sought hydrofoil technology. In a typical boat, the hull has contact with the water, leaving a massive surface area open to frictional losses. In an electric boat, this could mean a devastating efficiency drop resulting in limited range. 

In a hydrofoil, retractable wings will extend from the hull and create a lifting force similar to an airplane wing. Once the boat reaches 'flight' speed, the boat will rise out of the water and smoothly glide several feet above the water. At its cruising speed of 22 knots, the C-8 should draw just 23kW (30 horsepower) continuously. According to Candela's press release, the C-8 is over five times more efficient than a traditional boat.

While the concept was there, the startup saw issues with the C-8's batteries. Simply, Candela thought its battery tech wasn't ready to provide enough range for a mass-market product. In need of batteries, the firm networked around, and Polestar decided to work with the aquatic startup to get its boats back into the air. 

Gallery: Candela C-8 Photos

"I called Gustav {Hasselskog}, the CEO of Candela, and checked what kind of needs they have and if a Polestar 2 battery could then fit into the hull of a Candela boat," said Dennis Nobelius, the COO of Polestar. Soon after, Candela decided that the 69kWh Polestar 2 Standard Range pack would be a good fit, and then they collaborated to get the batteries suited for a marine environment.

"We needed to do software adaptations and alterations to fit with the battery management system that would be needed in the Candela boat and the specific demands on how to pull out power from the battery," Nobelius told InsideEVs. The final result meant the Candela C-8's could go 57 nautical miles or 65 US miles on the Polestar battery. In other words, the C-8 could travel from Long Beach, California, to Avalon, Catalina Island on one charge.

Candela C-8 Specs:

• 8.5 meters (28 feet)

• 2.5 meters (8,2 feet)

• 1700 kg (3850 lbs.)

• 8 passengers

• 69 kWh battery (Polestar 2 Standard range Single motor)

• 30 knots (35 mph) top speed

• Expected range: 57 nautical miles (65 US miles) at 22 knots

• DC charging, or Polestar 11 kW 3-phase AC charging

Besides the batteries, Polestar is excited to invest its resources into different areas of electrification. "For us, this is more of a brand cooperation, a good technology cooperation, where we can both learn a bit, but the real boost here is for us where we can support electromobility be it on land or on sea," Nobelius added. "Seeing the beauty of actually being able to reduce the friction that much by just elevating the boat, we understand that it seems like the perfect match for battery-powered boats."

"We also recognize the brand and the design of the boat to be kind of similar to the Polestar. If we were to design a boat, which is not unlikely, it would more or less look like the Candela."

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