Volvo will build an initial batch of just 1000 cars for model year 2013, before increasing production to between 4000-6000 cars for 2014.
The Chinese-owned Swedish car company has been able to integrate production of the world’s first diesel plug-in hybrid into the same production line as the regular powered Volvo V60, V70, XC70, S80 and XC90 models at the Torslanda plant in Gothenburg.
It’s a considerable achievement considering the plug-in hybrid technology includes two fundamentally different powertrains, as well as a sophisticated battery pack that’s capable of providing a range of around 51 kilometres on pure electric power.
“We are the first in the industry to integrate a plug-in hybrid in an established production flow together with other car models,” says Peter Mertens, Senior Vice President Research and Development at Volvo Car Corporation.
“The integration in the standard production flow gives the plug-in hybrid buyer the possibility to choose in principle all options available for the standard Volvo V60”, said Mertens.
The final assembly line has been rebuilt and modified to accommodate over 300 additional parts that go into the plug-in hybrid compared with a standard V60.
The 11.2 kWh lithium-type battery pack, for example, is lifted through the car’s tailgate and then spun a quarter of a turn in the passenger compartment, with just 20 millimetres to spare.
The initial batch of 1000 Volvo V60 Plug-in Hybrids has already sold out ahead the first deliveries, with order books for 2014 model year already filling up, according to Peter Mertens.