Volvo announce XC40EV to be first full Electric Vehicle

Thomas Ingenlath, Volvo design chief has confirmed that the Company’s first Electric Vehicle will be an XC40. Already available as a hybrid the XC40EV will be launched in 2019.

Volvo design chief Thomas Ingenlath has confirmed that the brand’s first fully electric car will be a version of the XC40, with the next-generation XC90 also gaining an EV variant.

Speaking at the launch of the Volvo S60 sports saloon, Ingenlath stated that the XC40Ev would come after the launch of the Polestar ‘2’, which is due in 2019. Polestar is the electric sub-brand of Volvo. The XC40EV will be followed by an all electric XC90 in 2021. This will be produced at a new Volvo factory in Charleston, South Carolina.

Ingenlath stated that Volvo would only produce electric versions of current cars, rather than building a range of electric-only models.

“It’s not a secret any more that the first full electric Volvo is on its way with the XC40. 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 when the majority are 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.”

Volvo has  a target for 50% of its car sales to be fully electric by 2025.

Ingenlath stated that while Volvo will focus on electric versions of its current line-up. The Polestar sub-brand (which he also heads up) could be used to develop bolder EV-only cars.

“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 stated. “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.”

The new S60 has two plug-in hybrid variants. The T8 Twin Engine, which produces a combined 385bhp, and a Polestar Engineered performance version which has a combined power output of 409bhp.

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