News - Volvo
Shanghai show: Volvo’s first EV to be built in China
All the way with CMA: Volvo’s Compact Modular Architecture (CMA) was presented in Shanghai as a technical study with the battery electric powertrain on-board. The question now is whether it will first appear as a small passenger car or SUV.
Australia waits as Volvo’s first all-electric car based on CMA platform draws near
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20 April 2017
VOLVO will build its first fully electric car in China and plans to export it
to global markets, including Australia, from 2019.
Part of Zhejiang Geely Holding Group since 2010, when the Chinese auto giant
purchased the Swedish brand from Ford Motor Company, Volvo Cars used the
Shanghai auto show this week to confirm the production location for the all-new
model that will form a key part of its ambitious electrification strategy
announced 12 months ago.
Under the plan, Volvo intends to have sold a cumulative one million electrified
cars worldwide by 2025, relying on this inaugural all-electric vehicle, other
newly developed EVs and at least two hybrid versions in every model line,
including at least one plug-in hybrid.
Although Australia will be a small player, particularly given the lack of
government subsidies and recharging infrastructure for EVs, Volvo Car Australia
director of PR and corporate Greg Bosnich told GoAuto this week that
“discussions (are) ongoing but (we) anticipate arrival of EV during 2020”.
VCA managing director Kevin McCann has previously confirmed that the electric
model, other EVs and the forthcoming hybrids “are all right-hand drive and are
on the radar for Australia”.
For the past 18 months, the Australian subsidiary has also been working towards
the goal of having electrified vehicles account for 10 per cent of its sales by
the end of 2017 – a target that now looks set to push out towards the broader
global deadline of 2020.
Details of Volvo’s first EV remain under wraps, other than the fact that it
will be based on the Compact Modular Architecture (CMA) – co-developed in China
for use with fellow Geely brand Lynk & Co – that will underpin the forthcoming
new 40-series models due here from 2018.
The EV’s body style is not yet confirmed, but will be designed for broad
international acceptance. Hybrid and regular internal combustion variants are
expected to follow.
The Scalable Product Architecture (SPA) currently used on larger 90-series
vehicles such as the current XC90 – and will underpin the next 60-series
mid-size range, kicking off with the new XC60 later this year – will also spawn
Volvo said in Shanghai this week that the decision to make its first electric
car in China “highlights the central role China will play in Volvo’s
electrified future and underlines China’s growing sophistication as a
manufacturing centre for the automotive industry”.
Chief executive Hakan Samuelsson said: “Volvo Cars fully supports the Chinese
government’s call for cleaner air as outlined in the latest five-year plan. It
is fully in line with our own core values of environmental care, quality and
“We believe that electrification is the answer to sustainable mobility,” he
Volvo has three manufacturing facilities in China – Daqing, which produces
90-series models, Chengdu (60 series) and Luqiao (40 series). The latter will
build the first EV, alongside other CMA-based vehicles such as the forthcoming
XC40 compact SUV and Lynk & Co’s inaugural model, the 01 crossover.
Volvo Car Australia has no qualms about importing vehicles from China, with Mr
McCann telling GoAuto late last year: ““If there was ever a model that was
built in a Chinese factory that suited our market, we wouldn’t baulk at the
idea that it is built in China because we know that our global standards are
“We know (that) what’s more important about the car is the way it is developed.
And alongside that, the way the engineering processes to build it are developed
as well,” he said.