Watching the Northern Lights dance live across the sky is a magical sight. A trip to northern Sweden is even worth chasing the Northern Lights – especially if it’s not just any car but the Polestar 1.
- Michael Lusk / A&W Verlag
Many legends surround the aurora borealis or polar lights. It should be dancing maidens, valkyries or children of the sun, glimpses of the endless expanses of the universe or torches of the gods. The formation of the Northern Lights can now be explained scientifically, but that does not take away from the fascination of experiencing this unique natural spectacle with your own eyes. Every year, thousands of tourists make a pilgrimage to the end of the world to experience the Northern Lights live. Incidentally, the area between Kiruna and Abisko on the other side of the Arctic Circle in Sweden is particularly suitable for this.
A journey through snow and ice
That’s why I picked up a car with the appropriate name for chasing the Northern Lights: the Polestar 1. The electric coupe has been rolling off the assembly line for about three years, and the planned 1,500 units have now been produced. If you hurry – and you have 165,000 francs on the top edge – you can always grab one of the last copies. Thanks to its plug-in hybrid, the two-door Gran Turismo is ideal as a passenger car, can cover more than 100 kilometers on electricity and, when these are exhausted, easily cover another 500 kilometers on petrol. Of course, there are fewer in winter, but since Swedes and Scandinavians in general are fans of e-mobility, there are enough charging stations even in the deserted areas north of Lulea.
Inside, too, the electric coupé offers plenty of luxury, from the vertical infotainment system to the ventilation nozzles, the crystal gear selector or the Bowers & Wilkins audio system, to fill waiting times. waiting for the aurora borealis. Details such as the golden straps, which take up the look of the struts and brake calipers, or the logo, which is always painted in the color of the vehicle, add a special touch. Incidentally, I particularly liked the excellent seat and steering wheel heating – because in the Arctic Circle the thermometer quickly reads minus 20 degrees and below. And finally, the USB port to power the phone. In the end, it was just that, or rather an aurora borealis application on the smartphone connected to it, which predicted the best locations, which was worth its weight in gold.
Breathtaking spectacle in the sky
The first two days the sky showed on the cloudy side, at night there was no sign of the northern lights. Just walking through this snow and ice-covered landscape and admiring the majestic tranquility of Swedish nature from the huge hotel window at night is worth the trip. So are the world famous snow sculpture festivals in Kiruna.
But back to the Northern Lights: on the third day, the sky was finally clearing up, the sun was shining and after dark, the tension was increasing hour by hour. Will the Northern Lights work today? Suddenly the smartphone vibrates, the app triggered the northern lights alarm. Quickly in the car and out of the city and its light pollution, a few kilometers to the north the conditions are ideal. And as soon as the city lights are behind me, the sky above me begins to glow green and blue. There they are, the dancing aurora borealis, very faint at first, then more and more!
And even if the show ends far too soon: delighted, humbled and with another check mark on my personal wish list, I return to the hotel in the Polestar 1. Knowing that driving this future classic beyond the Arctic Circle is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
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