Volvo has no plans to build a luxury limousine to rival the likes of the BMW 7 Series and Mercedes-Benz S-Class, instead focusing its attention on smaller models that fit with its “green image”.
Speaking with industry journal Automotive News China at the Shanghai auto show, Volvo CEO Hakan Samuelsson denied the brand was considering a premium model above S80, insisting that such a car would not appeal to Volvo’s target market.
“We don’t have any ambitions to go into a segment where we would compete with vehicles that have V8 or V12 engines,” Samuelsson said.
“We don’t believe it would fit our brand image.”
Rumours of a larger Volvo model picked up speed in 2010 when the CEO of Volvo’s then-new owner Geely, Li Shufu, said the Swedish brand needed “more high-level cars that compete with the S-Class of Mercedes-Benz and the 7 Series of BMW”.
Volvo’s then-CEO, Steven Jacoby, denied there were any plans to produce such a model, although the subsequent unveiling of the Volvo Universe (above) and Volvo You (top) concepts in 2011 suggested the brand was working on a limousine to headline its future portfolio.
But Samuelsson says he has no intention of turning Volvo into a German copycat brand, insisting the company is forging ahead with its work on the next-generation S80 and XC90 models on the SPA platform, as well as a new platform for a family of small cars to be shared between Volvo and Geely.
Just last week, Volvo launched the 257kW/500Nm-plus Volvo S60 Polestar, a four-wheel drive performance model developed exclusively for the Australian market.