Volvo will change the way it names its cars starting a new full-electric flagship that will debut next year.
Instead of carrying over the XC90 moniker, Volvo will deviate from using letter and number combinations for its Tesla Model X rival.
“This car will have a name, more like a [newborn] child,” Volvo CEO Hakan Samuelsson said during a presentation of the company’s EV-centric future on Wednesday.
Volvo wants half of its global sales — an estimated 600,000 — to be full-electric vehicles by 2025 and to be an electric-only brand by 2030.
Samuelsson said Volvo wants to premiere a new name for the model because the crossover will:
- Debut a new platform
- Only be sold online
- Offer lidar as standard to improve safety
- Eventually offer unsupervised driving in so-called Ride Model in locations where legislation allows the car’s technology to take control
- Offer bidirectional charging so customer can feed electricity back to the grid in locations where that is possible.
“Calling that just a new XC90 would be wrong because this is the really a first of its kind,” Samuelsson told Automotive News Europe.
The new car will also showcase a sleeker exterior and more spacious interior previewed by the Concept Recharge that Volvo debuted on Wednesday.
The prototype’s grille has a shield-like structure as well as a new interpretation of Volvo’s Thor’s Hammer headlight design.
The stars of the uncluttered interior are a 15-inch touchscreen and a floating screen behind the steering wheel that will use Volvo’s newly developed operating system. Volvo EVs will also have a centralized computing platform.
When asked how much of the Concept Recharge’s design language would be transferred to the new crossover Samuelsson was cautious: “Some ideas normally move up. I won’t say more.”
Volvo plans to reveal the car’s name when it debuts the production version of the crossover in 2022. Deliveries of the EV, which will be built at the automaker’s U.S. factory in South Carolina, will start in 2023.
Samuelsson said Volvo’s new nomenclature will be extended to its the forthcoming wave of new EVs underpinned by the second-generation of its Scalable Platform Architecture, SPA2, and to a small electric crossover that will use the Sustainable Experience Architecture (SEA) the Swedish automaker helped parent Zhejiang Geely Holding develop.
Volvo began launching one electric car each year starting in 2020 with the XC40 Recharge. The C40 was the automaker’s 2021 debut followed by the flagship crossover due next year. Volvo hasn’t said which EVs are planned for 2023-25, although the small model should be in the mix along with a premium midsize SUV to succeed its No. 2-seller globally, the XC60..
Meanwhile, Volvo confirmed there will not be a third-generation XC90 with a combustion engine or plug-in hybrid powertrain, but the current generations of each may see updates.
GÖTEBORG, Sweden, April 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Sharing the Green Deal vision of sustainable transport and a carbon neutral Europe by 2050, two leading companies in the commercial vehicle industry, Daimler Truck AG and the Volvo Group, have signed a preliminary non-binding agreement to establish a new joint venture. The intention is to develop, produce and commercialize fuel cell systems for heavy-duty vehicle applications and other use cases. Daimler will consolidate all its current fuel cell activities in the joint venture. The Volvo Group will acquire 50% in the joint venture for the sum of approximately EUR 0.6 billion on a cash and debt free basis.
“Transport and logistics keep the world moving, and the need for transport will continue to grow. Truly CO2-neutral transport can be accomplished through electric drive trains with energy coming either from batteries or by converting hydrogen on board into electricity. For trucks to cope with heavy loads and long distances, fuel cells are one important answer and a technology where Daimler has built up significant expertise through its Mercedes-Benz fuel cell unit over the last two decades. This joint initiative with the Volvo Group is a milestone in bringing fuel cell powered trucks and buses onto our roads,” says Martin Daum, Chairman of the Board of Management Daimler Truck AG and Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG.
“Electrification of road transport is a key element in delivering the so called Green Deal, a carbon neutral Europe and ultimately a carbon neutral world. Using hydrogen as a carrier of green electricity to power electric trucks in long-haul operations is one important part of the puzzle, and a complement to battery electric vehicles and renewable fuels. Combining the Volvo Group and Daimler’s experience in this area to accelerate the rate of development is good both for our customers and for society as a whole. By forming this joint venture, we are clearly showing that we believe in hydrogen fuel cells for commercial vehicles. But for this vision to become reality, other companies and institutions also need to support and contribute to this development, not least in order to establish the fuel infrastructure needed,” says Martin Lundstedt, Volvo Group President and CEO.
The Volvo Group and Daimler Truck AG will be 50/50 partners in the joint venture, which will operate as an independent and autonomous entity, with Daimler Truck AG and the Volvo Group continuing to be competitors in all other areas of business. Joining forces will decrease development costs for both companies and accelerate the market introduction of fuel cell systems in products used for heavy-duty transport and demanding long-haul applications. In the context of the current economic downturn cooperation has become even more necessary in order to meet the Green Deal objectives within a feasible time-frame.
The common goal is for both companies to offer heavy-duty vehicles with fuel cells for demanding long-haul applications in series production in the second half of the decade. In addition, other automotive and