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Posts Tagged ‘volvo news’

A Year Before it Opens, Volvo Set to Double Size of New Charleston Plant

Will start with S60; second model to be announced "soon."

by on Sep.20, 2017

The new Volvo XC60 is anchoring parent Geely's ambitious global expansion plans.

The first car isn’t scheduled to roll down the assembly line at Volvo’s new Charleston, South Carolina assembly plant for another year, but the automaker already appears to be optimistic enough to plan for a second, $1 billion line.

The plant will become Volvo’s first assembly plant in the U.S., and will combine its capacity with two new facilities that have already opened in China. The Charleston facility originally was designed with just one line, and was expected to produce about 140,000 vehicles annually – relatively small by modern automotive standards. Sources indicate that will be boosted to more than 200,000 with the addition of a second line.

Breaking News!

“The factory is extremely important for Volvo,” Lex Kerssemakers, the CEO of Volvo North America, told TheDetroitBureau.com during an interview last month. Among other things, he said, when the original investment was announced “it sent a signal” to both consumers and dealers that Volvo was making a serious commitment to the U.S. market.

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Volvo’s Top Executives Swapping Jobs

Move is designed to help company's long-term planning.

by on Aug.29, 2017

Lex Kerssemakers is taking over the leadership of the company's EMEA car business.

With the company heading for record sales again this year, Volvo Cars is switching up its senior management team with a move with implications for the automaker’s succession planning.

Volvo said the Senior Vice Presidents for the Americas region and for Europe, the Middle East and Africa will switch jobs.

Global Auto News!

Effective Sept. 15, Lex Kerssemakers will be responsible for the EMEA region. He was previously Senior Vice President for Volvo Americas and President and CEO of Volvo Cars USA. Kerssemakers will be replaced in the Americas by Anders Gustafsson, who was Head of EMEA. (more…)

Volvo Wants to Change the Way Americans Buy New Vehicles

Test focuses on V60 wagon; could expand to more models.

by on Aug.24, 2017

Volvo has two different buying processes for its two different V90 options. Buyers can order a V90 the way they want it.

While most American motorists now use the Internet to do their initial research, it has done little to change the rest of the new car buying process. Shoppers still go to the showroom to negotiate their best price for whatever is on the lot.

But Volvo is hoping to shift that process. But while the Internet will play even more of a role in the process of ordering the Swedish maker’s new 2018 V90 model, it will actually take shoppers longer to drive home in the new wagon.

News You Can Trust!

That’s because Volvo is using the V90 to try to shift to a more European-style shopping process. Where American motorists typically seek instant gratification, taking delivery the same day they go out shopping, buyers in Europe are far more likely to customize their vehicles, even if that means waiting weeks to take delivery, notes Lex Kerssemakers, CEO of Volvo Cars of North America. (more…)

Driver Assistance Tech Saving Lives, Preventing Crashes

Study finds big benefits from Lane Warning, Blind Spot Detection.

by on Aug.23, 2017

Cars using Lane Departure Warning typically use cameras to spot lane markers.

New, high-tech driver assistance systems like Lane Departure Warning and Blind Spot Detection, or LDW and BLIS, are helping sharply reduce the number of crashes on U.S. roadways, in the process curbing injuries and reducing deaths.

Those and other technologies, including forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking, are becoming increasingly common on today’s new vehicles and two new studies by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety suggest they may have been a factor in the recent decline in U.S. automotive fatalities.

Safety News!

Some safety experts believe that what are collectively known as Advanced Driver Assistance Systems, or ADAS, are critical in offsetting an epidemic of distracted driving crashes, though there are also concerns that motorists might come to rely too heavily on the technologies and not be as vigilant as possible.

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Volvo, Geely Create Joint Venture Aimed at EV Market

New deal helps reduce development costs.

by on Jul.21, 2017

Volvo CEO Hakan Samuelsson expects development and production costs to drop with the new joint venture with Geely and Lynk.

With its profits climbing 21.4% in the first half of 2017, Volvo Cars is planning to set up a new joint venture technology company with Geely Holding. The new deal is designed to reduce development and production costs.

Volvo’s venture with the Chinese car group is to “share existing and future technology, deepen industrial synergies and provide the economies of scale that will allow them to more rapidly develop next generation electrified vehicle technology,” the two companies said in a joint statement.

Global Auto News!

Volvo Cars, Geely Auto and Lynk & Co. will share vehicle architecture and engine technologies through cross licensing arrangements of technologies managed by the new joint venture. The new partners will also commonly sourcing components cutting procurement costs. (more…)

France Expected to Ban Gas, Diesel Vehicles – But Not Until 2040

“A very difficult objective,” admits Environment Minister.

by on Jul.07, 2017

Even before the latest proposal, Paris was considering a ban on diesel vehicles.

France could become one of the first countries to ban the sale of vehicles running on fossil fuels, the country’s Environment Minister this week proposing a complete transition to zero-emissions vehicles.

But it won’t happen quickly, Nicolas Hulot’s plan expected to take until 2040 to roll out. And the minister admitted the “revolution” he is proposing would create some serious challenges for the auto industry. It does help that both French-based automakers have already made major commitments to shift to electric propulsion.

The Last Word!

A number of countries are focusing on alternative powertrain technologies, ranging from hybrids to pure battery-electric vehicles, or BEVs, as well as hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles. That includes China, the world’s largest automotive market. But none have yet gone as far as to actively consider plans to eliminate gas and diesel vehicle sales entirely.

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Volvo Parent Geely Buys Flying Car Start-up Terrafugia

Flying car race heating up fast.

by on Jul.05, 2017

Looking like the flying car in "Back to the Future," a rendering shows the Terrafugia Transition in flight.

The long-held dream of building a flying car may be coming a big step closer to reality now that Geely, the deep-pocket parent of Volvo Cars has acquired Terrafugia, a start-up launched by a group of MIT alum.

Among an assortment of companies hoping to build flying cars, Terrafugia is one of the furthest along, with the Massachusetts-based firm already going airborne with prototype designs. More importantly, the Terrafugia Transition last year won a critical certification from the Federal Aviation Administration that would make it easier for owners to take to the air.

Take Wing!

Funding from Zhejiang Geely could be what’s needed to push Terrafugia over the top, especially as it now faces a range of competitors hoping to take off with their own flying car and flying taxi concepts. That includes Slovakian start-up AeroMobil and Germany’s Lilium, as well as aerospace giant Airbus. Even Uber wants to get into the act, the car-sharing service recently announcing plans to take its operation airborne with a concept it has dubbed Uber Elevate.

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Volvo Going All Electric or Hybrid on Future Models

Transition to begin in 2019.

by on Jul.05, 2017

Volvo unveiled an all-electric version of its CMA platform at the Shanghai Motor Show.

Volvo is plugging into electric propulsion in a big way, the Swedish-based automaker announcing today that all new models coming after 2019 will use some form of electric propulsion, whether hybrid, plug-in or pure battery-electric.

The announcement follows Volvo’s decision last month to have its Polestar division shift focus to high-performance electric vehicles. But it also underscores the growing emphasis on electrification by luxury automakers, in general, BMW planning to reveal a pure battery-electric version of its iconic 3-Series sedan at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September, while Daimler said today it is investing over $700 million in battery-car operations in China.

We Go Beyond the Headlines!

“This announcement marks the end of the solely combustion engine-powered car,” Volvo Cars CEO Hakan Samuelsson said in a statement announcing the decision by the high-line automaker owned by China’s Zhejiang Geely.

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Volvo Relaunching Polestar as “Electrified High Performance” Company

Polestar joins growing list of dedicated electric spin-offs.

by on Jun.22, 2017

Going forward, the Polestar logo will stand alone, without a Volvo badge.

Volvo has become the latest automaker to set up a separate operation focused specifically on electric vehicles, in this case, putting the emphasis on “high performance” models.

The move appears to position its Polestar division to challenge the new Mercedes-EQ sub-brand, which is set to launch at least seven electric vehicles by 2022, and BMW i, as well as upstart battery-carmakers like Tesla, Faraday Future and Lucid. The announcement does not appear to preclude Volvo’s ability to produce less performance-oriented electric vehicles under its own badge.

Electrifying News!

Purchased by Volvo in 2015, Polestar will now operate as a standalone company with a new management team. That includes Chief Operating Officer Jonathan Gooding, who had been Volvo’s communications chief, and new Chief Executive Officer Thomas Ingenlath, who had been Volvo’s global design director.

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Volvo to Build its 1st EV in China

Will share same CMA architecture as next-gen XC50.

by on Apr.20, 2017

A platform to built upon: the electrified CMA architecture that will be used for Volvo's 1st EV.

While electric drive systems are powering a significant share of the new models on display at this year’s Shanghai Motor Show, Volvo is showing off a new platform – the one it use for the Swedish-based brand’s first fully electric vehicle which, officials revealed, will go on sale in 2019.

Volvo has been an aggressive proponent of clean powertrain technology – the most powerful drivetrain it currently offers is the plug-in T8 found on models like the big XC90 SUV and S90 sedan. But it is getting ready to market a battery-electric model that will meet tough new emissions and mileages standards in the U.S., China, Europe and Japan.

Global Auto News!

And it will be produced in China, at least initially, the automaker said during the Shanghai Motor Show press preview – though other models using electric propulsion are expected to be built in Europe and, most likely, at the new assembly plant Volvo is setting up near Charleston, South Carolina.

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