So the news that Volvo Cars have decided to initiate a global small-car policy could be seen as the Swedish brand moving in an audacious new direction, but the news that they have already produced two new concept cars in that field is pretty much astounding.
Obviously, the 40 series cars revealed recently by the Swedish Car giant are what they are - concept models - but they give a revealing insight into how Volvo plans to expand into the large and lucrative global market for premium small cars.
For a start, the new concept cars will be the first vehicles built around Volvo’s new, bold and daring Compact Modular Architecture (CMA), which has been specially created for smaller cars, and will also (no surprises here) "combine bold exterior and interior design with industry-leading connectivity, electrification and autonomous drive technologies."
Thomas Ingenlath, Senior Vice President, Design, at Volvo Car Group, is confident about the future success of the new, smaller Volvos: “Each member of our product family has its own distinct character, just like the members of a real family. CMA has helped us to capture something special, something youthful in our new concept cars. They have an energy, a disruptive and engaging urban character that makes them stand out among the crowd. This is the flavour of small Volvos to come.”
Volvo’s small-car strategy is not only a part of an ongoing global operational and financial transformation that will see Volvo put in place an ambitious revitalisation plan that will reposition the brand to compete with its global premium competitors within the next four years, but an essential element of it too, including a pure-battery electric vehicle as well as Twin Engine plug-in hybrid powertrain variants in the intended new global small-car range .
With plans to have globally sold a total of up to one million electrified cars by 2025 in place, Dr Peter Mertens, Senior Vice President, Research & Development at Volvo said: “By taking a modular approach to both vehicle architecture and powertrain development, we have succeeded in leap-frogging many of the players in the premium segment. Our new battery electric powertrain variant opens yet another exciting chapter in the unfolding Volvo story.”
And Håkan Samuelsson, President and Chief Executive of Volvo Cars, added: “The new 40 series cars have the potential to improve our market penetration in an important growing segment. An electric powertrain program, including both a new compact Twin Engine plug-in hybrid as well as a pure electric car, are central to the CMA architecture.”
It's not only the daring exterior design and electrified powertrain options that Volvo see as ground-breaking in the new range. The new cars will also offer a full range of innovative connectivity services, plus the world’s most advanced standard package of safety features (again, no surprises there!) and ground-breaking Scandinavian interior design.
The first new 40 series car is expected to go into production in 2017, and here at Nationwide Vehicle Contracts, we will keep you well up to speed when it comes to information about the new cars .