Volvo’s First Pure Electric Will Be XC40 Crossover

JUN 26 2018 BY VANJA KLJAIC 34

The Volvo XC40 is slated to be the first fully electric revealed by the Swedish car maker.

This was confirmed by Thomas Ingenlath, Volvo’s design chief, speaking at the all-new Volvo S60 sports saloon reveal.

This comes as a logical and strong move by the company since Volvo will, with the quirky XC40, certainly appeal to the younger — more up-to-date with technology — would-be ownership base.

The vehicle is slated to be revealed after Polestar, Volvo’s sub-brand, launches its second car, the 2, due sometime in 2019. Additionally, after the reveal of the all-electric XC40, Volvo will follow with its bigger brother, the XC90, in the same all-electric attire.

Interestingly, Ingenlath stated that Volvo would only produce electric versions of their current cars, rather than building an entirely new electric-only platform from scratch. While surprising at first, this comes as a prudent business decision by the car maker. After all, Volvo just recently revamped what is seemingly their entire model range, thus negating any need to follow the same path that companies such as Volkswagen took with their ID line-up.

“It’s not a secret any more that the first full electric Volvo is on its way with the XC40 coming,” said Ingenlath. “It will arrive very soon after the Polestar 2. That is the first to come that’s not exotic. We’ll start with XC40 and then on it will come step after step into our model range. The next car will be the next-generation XC90.”

“That will be the masterplan of how electrification will come to the Volvo product range. We will not establish products beside our hybrids, we will introduce electrification as a powertrain variant within the existing portfolio.

“You could say that is different to a lot of the mass-production brands. But I have a hard time to understand how their plan will work in the long run. Electrification is the future of the automotive industry, so how do you handle that as soon as you come to the majority of electric cars? How do you handle it in your portfolio? I think it’s much more natural to say it’s a powertrain variant that over time will take up the majority of the sold vehicles.”

Both the Volvo XC40 and Volvo XC90 are expected to be released with lithium-ion battery power, like their siblings from the sister brand Polestar. The XC40 EV is set to join the XC40 plug-in hybrid in the Volvo’s product range, offering customers more options for their brand new mid-size crossover, allowing them to match their specific needs.

The decision to produce both a hybrid an all-electric version of the Volvo XC40 and all their upcoming models goes hand in hand with the aim set by Volvo to capture 50% of the company’s sales volume from fully electric vehicles, all done by 2025. While this may seem like a bold goal, in reality, judging by the recently introduced models, the level of sophistication in both design & technology, it seems not so far out of reach.

New Volvo XC40

New Volvo XC40

“We definitely don’t want to bring something that we’ve so successfully just launched like an XC40 to an end just because combustion engines will disappear,” he said. “To look at new formats, new bodystyles and non-traditional elements, we founded Polestar to take care of that end of the scope. We developed that strategy: full electrification of the Volvo range, making it a natural part of the offer, and at the same time developing new, unconventional elements in the Polestar brand.”

Eventually, every Volvo will be offered as a mild hybrid, hybrid or battery-electric powertrain variant. Furthermore, the company is said not to be revealing any diesel variants of forthcoming models. While somewhat radical, this philosophy will certainly reap the company benefits and keep safeguard the environment a bit more. Combine that with the sheer appeal of the new Volvo models, and the Chinese Geely owned car maker may, in the end, become one of the most important key players in the future car world.

Meanwhile, grab a look at the recently revealed 2019 Volvo XC40 media gallery right below.

Volvo XC40 T5 plug-in hybrid
21 photos
Volvo XC40 T5 plug-in hybrid Volvo XC40 T5 plug-in hybrid Volvo XC40 T5 plug-in hybrid Volvo XC40 T5 plug-in hybrid Volvo XC40 T5 plug-in hybrid Volvo XC40 T5 plug-in hybrid Volvo XC40 T5 plug-in hybrid Volvo XC40 T5 plug-in hybrid Volvo XC40 T5 plug-in hybrid Volvo XC40 T5 plug-in hybrid New Volvo XC40 (ICE) - exterior New Volvo XC40 (ICE) - exterior New Volvo XC40 (ICE) - exterior New Volvo XC40 (ICE) - exterior Volvo XC40 T5 plug-in hybrid New Volvo XC40 (ICE) - exterior New Volvo XC40 (ICE) - exterior New Volvo XC40 (ICE) - exterior Volvo V40 New Volvo XC40 (ICE) - exterior

Source: AutoCar

Categories: Volvo

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34 Comments on "Volvo’s First Pure Electric Will Be XC40 Crossover"

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CU

I this Volvo S60 sports saloon the last ICE without any form of electrificatioon?

Get Real

Another AER-wasting, un-aerodynamic brick from a legacy LICE company.

EVShopper

As long as it has at least ~240miles range, who cares? It looks great and without a severely sloping roof line, it has some actual utility for carrying cargo and you can put stuff on the roof.

Tedfredrick

Most of us want a comfortable and stylish SUV. You can’t fit a weekend Home Depot haul in my Model 3

viriato

I think S60 will has a PHEV version, like V60 and the rest of Volvo cars.

Nozuka

“After all, Volvo just recently revamped what is seemingly their entire model range, thus negating any need to follow the same path that companies such as Volkswagen took with their ID line-up.”

VW didn’t have any “need” either. For example: The all new VW Golf will arrive in 2019. They could just have used that one and turned it into an EV too. And they already did it with the e-Golf. Instead they will release the VW I.D (Neo) shortly after, as another completely new car.

VW decided that with all their brands they are big enough to create a BEV-only platform, which is much more optimized and can also start fresh with a new and simpler electronic architecture, that is easier to update over the air. (Obviously inspired by Tesla.)
The “old school” Golf has like 60 electronic control units and some of their premium cars even up to 100… their new BEV platform replaces them with 3 “powerful” computational units.
Will also save them a lot of money in the end.

But it’s good that they all go a different route. More variety for us.

Salem

It’s interesting time with everybody trying different approaches to EVs.
When I went shopping for a Diesel they where all so extremely boringly similar, same sound, same pull, etc…

James

The whole Polestar branding doesn’t engender any point of reference regarding performance to me. Pole + Star…. Can Volvo come up with branding that says more to a wider audience?

The Chinese infusion of cash has enabled Volvo to catch up to its competitors in style and design. Like everyone else they pushed most of their resources into making tall station wagons (SUVs). Cramming battery packs into channels and under the back seat will not suffice when others with deeper pockets can develop skateboard platforms that are easier to attach several different body styles onto.

The money and sales seem to be there for the short run. I have my doubts that they can carry forward their momentum unless they commit further resources to an all electric platform.

Andy

The chassis on the XC40 is a brand new modular design, designed to be used for ICE, Hybrid and BEV just by swapping a few parts out. That’s likely to be what most new chassis are going to be like for the foreseeable future as manufacturers sell vehicles with different power plants to suit the requirements of the customer.

That particular chassis is also going to be used in their new V40 hatchback and other small models, so it’s not just for CUV/SUVs. They’re releasing an SUV first because they have the highest profit margins and they are most popular with customers. Saloons/sedans are a significantly shrinking market and are a low profit margin segment which is why, outside Tesla, most manufacturers are concentrating on CUV/SUVs. People are willing to pay more for them, which offsets the added cost of EV over ICE at this point.

antrik

Considering the vastly different geometry of an optimised EV platform, I have a hard time believing a “modular” chassis for both EVs and ICE vehicles can be anything more than a mediocre compromise.

Take the IONIQ for example: while its efficient electric power train sets it somewhat apart from more traditional ICE conversions such as the e-Golf, it just doesn’t allow for the large batteries and roomy interiors of pure EV platforms.

Get Real

It represents a compromise and it compromises optimizing for a true, skateboard-based BEV with optimized aero for optimum range per KWH of battery.

Welcome to the dilemma of the legacy, laggard LICE auto OEMs, they can make superior vehicles with clean-sheet designs optimized for BEVs and expect them to cannibalize their LICE crap that is still lucrative for a while or they can go all in.

We see here their heavily compromised choices to keep the polluting, gas-guzzling LICE age going for fun and profit at the expense of the future of all people and the planet.

Andy

Why will they make any less money from EV than ICE? They are car manufacturers first and foremost, not engine manufacturers. As long as their profit margin is the same and they sell the same (or more) amount of cars it’s unlikely they will care if they are EV or ICE.

The reality of the technology and market now means that Hybrid is here to stay for the foreseeable future. Manufacturers can either lose a significant part of their market, build two completely separate chassis (at extra cost), or use a “compromised” modular system. If Volvo really can produce a 240 mile SUV for $35-40k using this “compromised” chassis then does it really matter for the end user whether it’s a dedicated chassis or not?

Andy

I’m not sure if I can post a link, but if so it’s one from this blog

https://insideevs.com/new-volvo-40-series-to-get-plug-in-hybrid-and-pure-electric-versions/

Which shows the concept XC40 and the electric version of the chassis, which seems to indicate the BEV chassis will have a skateboard like design, similar to those seem in other BEV’s. The modularity means it can be swapped out for a more traditional design for the PHEV and ICE versions.

antrik

That’s not really a skateboard design. It’s has fairly narrow, awkwardly shaped battery that looks like it infringes on passenger space. Also, the whole thing wastes space in the rear (they won’t install a rear drive motor in the BEV version, although the PHEV has one, WTF?); and even more space in front, with a large, mostly unused engine compartment — instead of moving the cabin forward for more space and better visibility, as in dedicated EV designs.

It looks very unlikely this thing will deliver range or space at all comparable to a dedicated EV design in the same form factor.

antrik

I forgot to mention, the oversized engine compartment designed to accommodate a combustion engine also compromises aerodynamics; and the sub-optimal geometry and more complex chassis designed for an ICE power train also increases weight.

Andy

Aerodynamics are important, but so is style. The over reliance on aerodynamics on Teslas (for example) make them very distinct vehicles, but also very ugly in many peoples eyes. Perhaps there will be a move towards more aerodynamic vehicles and the style will become more popular, but at the moment many people prefer a more traditional car like design.

antrik

I agree that there is no fundamental reason for EVs to be less profitable, when they are not made as low volume compliance cars.

However, not having a dedicated, fully optimised EV platform, actually hampers their ability to minimise unit costs while scaling up volumes. A common platform only saves costs as long they are making only low volumes, piggy-backing on the ICE variant production.

Andy

Common platforms are pretty standard throughout the car industry. VW for instance use the same platform for about half a dozen of it’s different cars and crossovers, the same with many other manufacturers. A company like Volvo, who only make 500,000 vehicles a year is going to struggle if they have to design completely different chassis for every different model/type of vehicle and power train they make, hence the use of a modular system.

The XC40 was designed for all three power trains from the start, so it may be just as “compromised” for ICE as EV, depending on what Volvo sees as the larger sales volume.

antrik

Sure, VW uses a common platform for most of their ICE models; and they will use a common platform for their future EVs… But they will not use the same one for both. That’s a much more problematic trade-off.

Tedfredrick

That’s like saying a house built of bricks is a compromise. You have obviously never played with LEGOs

antrik

Sure I have. And I can confidently say that LEGO is *not* a good way to build houses 🙂

Senna

Nice cars for grandpa.

Mark.ca

You getting one?

Tedfredrick

I’m a grandpa and proud of it. I can also bench press 250 lbs. being a grandpa doesn’t meet you are week or out of touch

Mark.ca

Go kick Senna’s rude ass!

jim stack

But they forgot where will you charge it on a trip. Only Tesla has that covered so far. They even give free local chargers to companies and apartment complexes. They know that makes it an any where anyplace vehicle.

wavelet

In the US. In Europe there are more all-brand long-distance fast chargers than Tesla chargers, and this may be the case in the US in 2-3 years.
A single-brand charging network is senseless, just like a single-brand refueling network would be. Tesla may have not had a choice a few years ago, but the situation is different now.

happosai

Non-tesla charging stations in EU are tho… special. Need a special app use. Need a special subscription plan. Sometimes unreliable. Not very often, but when they fail the negativity hits you bad.

The non-tesla group of EV chargers need standardizing and credit card based payments ASAP.

Murrysville EV

This is the EV I want, but I hope it’s not going to be a compliance car.

pjwood1

What if it’s “subscription only”?

Dan

“Ingenlath stated that Volvo would only produce electric versions of their current cars, rather than building an entirely new electric-only platform from scratch. While surprising at first, this comes as a prudent business decision by the car maker. After all, Volvo just recently revamped what is seemingly their entire model range, thus negating any need to follow the same path that companies such as Volkswagen took with their ID line-up.”

What kind of second rate journalism is this? And on an EV site? The rationale here is: “Because Volvo recently designed their cars from the ground up to be gas cars, therefore they have no need for a clean sheet EV design”.

This is just a timid approach to avoid the investment necessary to create a great EV. This history of EVs is littered with terrible cars where automakers shoved batteries in the trunk rather than engineer from the ground up for EV excellence. Volvo’s attempt won’t be any different.

Vanja Kljaic

Give Volvo CMA a look over when you grab a chance. Might clear some qualms you have rather quickly.

Dan

Blah, blah, blah! No range, no power…. Volvo has become a dirty name to me! It’s owned by Chinese Communist dictators.

premium salmon

Any info on charging? Battery capacity and C value? LOasing and time need? Can it benefit from 150 – 300-450 kW chargers?