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Future models - Volvo - S90

Volvo S90 flagship on the way

Family resemblance: The S90 is likely to feature styling cues from the Concept Coupe and the all-new XC90 SUV.

Scalable Product Architecture to underpin new Volvo S90 flagship sedan

Volvo logo3 Oct 2014

By TIM NICHOLSON in PARIS

VOLVO will replace its ageing S80 sedan with a new flagship S90 to be spun off the same scalable architecture as the new XC90 SUV, and it is set to be revealed next year.

The Swedish car-maker’s CEO Hakan Samuelsson confirmed the existence of the S90 to the Wall Street Journal back in August this year, and it appears development of that the new model has progressed a little further.

Speaking with Australian journalists at the Paris motor show, Volvo Car Group research and development senior vice president Peter Mertens said the S90 would feature the company’s new corporate face, first previewed on the Concept Coupe at last year’s Geneva motor show.

“The next model is being launched on SPA (Scalable Product Architecture),” he said. “It will be a completely new design on that car, but it will have many clues just from the front of the vehicle of the new face of Volvo you can see here (on XC90).

“So there are similarities, we are going to define them as the future face but it is really a stunningly great looking car.”

Mr Mertens said Volvo was in the “midst of developing it”, adding that it would be a global car, not just a model designed for the Chinese market.

Asked if the S90 would be launched in Australia, Mr Mertens said it “absolutely” would get a local berth.

While timing is yet to be confirmed, Mr Mertens said the S90 would likely be previewed next year, and given that Volvo has revealed three concepts in the past 12 months to highlight its new design direction, it is likely the preview would be a production version.

Mr Mertens said the S90 would “most likely” be the largest Volvo passenger sedan in the company’s history, which means it would easily exceed the size of the vehicle it replaces, the S80.

The S80 arrived in Australia in early 2007 as a rival for German executive saloons such as the Audi A6, BMW 5 Series and Mercedes-Benz E-Class, but sales of the Swedish-built model failed to ignite.

Volvo Cars Australia offers the S80 for special order only, and it is priced from $84,590 for the sole 3.0-litre V6 variant, making it pricier than the entry-level A6, 5 Series and E-Class.

Mr Mertens said the Scalable Product Architecture can stretch to fit models from the size of an S60 to an XC90, making it ideal for the S90.

A new flagship sedan should give Volvo a further boost in the Chinese market, which is home to its parent company, Geely.

Geely bought the Swedish brand from Ford in 2010for $US1.8 billion.

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