Stephen Jacoby, CEO of Volvo Cars, has denied speculation that the company is thinking of introducing an S-Class rival in the near future. According to Jacoby, timing is not right for such a model to enter the showroom.
In August last year, Chinese company Geely Automotive Holdings acquired Volvo Cars. Soon after the deal, Geely expressed interest in Volvo producing larger cars. Geely said that it wanted Volvo to introduce more high-end cars to rival the likes of the Mercedes-Benz S-Class and BMW 7 Series, mainly in Chinese markets.
This is not what the boss of Volvo Cars has in mind though. Jacoby recently said,
"It’s too early for us to enter that segment, so it’s not in our mid or long-term plans. We won’t build anything larger than the S80 L [only available in China]."
Even so, Volvo unveiled an all-new Concept Universe project at Auto Shanghai 2011 just a couple of weeks ago, showcasing a large sedan platform. Although it was a large sedan, Volvo says it was more of a design direction exercise, a potential face for future Volvo cars. Design chief Peter Horbury said prior to the unveiling,
"We’ll be discreetly asking people nearby during the show: ‘Do you think this could be a Volvo?’ We’ve been deliberately brave here."
According to reports, the concept features Volvo's new Scalable Platform Architecture (SPA), a platform which will also be used on all Volvo sedans of the future, ranging from the S40 to the China-only S80 L.