Volvo has high hopes for redesigned XC60

Volvo is counting on their new bigger, safer and more technologically advanced and redesigned XC60 to match or exceed the success of its predecessor, the brand’s global best-seller.

“The hope is to do that [outsell the first-generation model],” Karl-Johan Ekman, vice president of Volvo’s midsize vehicle line, told Automotive News Europe ahead of the XC60’s debut at the Geneva auto show on Tuesday. “We are in a very ambitious mode right now and we want to move the company to the next level.”

 

CEO Hakan Samuelsson plans to set a fourth consecutive all-time high for global sales in 2017, and the redesigned XC60 is crucial to his goal.

“We have high expectations for this car,” Samuelsson told reporters on the eve of the Geneva show. “This car is a very important element of our future growth plan and for our profitability.”

Volvo is aiming to boost their worldwide volume to 800,000 vehicles by 2020 and increase their profit margins up to 8 percent, from 6.1 percent last year.

The XC60 is the Swedish automaker’s top-selling model in Europe and the United States accounted for 30 percent of the automaker’s 534,332 worldwide sales last year.

“The new generation is expected to continue the current generation’s success, or replicate the good results of the XC90 in the premium large SUV segment,” JATO analyst Felipe Munoz said prior to the unveiling. “Our forecast indicates that it will lead the European premium midsize SUV segment next year.”

The XC60 will go on sale in the fall, but pricing has not yet been announced.

Thomas Ingenlath, senior vice president of design, said the all-new 2018 XC60 is not a scaled down XC90.

“We were quite sure we wanted a different look and not babushka design,” he said.

The redesigned XC60 is longer, lower and wider than its predecessor. The wheelbase on the 2018 model grew 3.6 inches to 112.8 inches, while the overall length is only 2.4 inches longer to 184.6 inches.

The all-new XC60 includes a choice between a T5 with a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, T6 with a 2.0-liter both turbo-and supercharged and the T8 which is expected to increase its electric range to about 30 miles.

All the models will launch with all-wheel drive and an eight-speed automatic transmission. However, there are plans for a front-drive T5 in the future of the vehicle.

The automaker will have a T4, which is a front-drive base model with naturally aspirated 2.0-liter engine that is designed largely for China.

The T4 will be built in China, with a later launch date, and is not expected to make its way to North America.

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