It’s generally accepted that the first ‘motor car’ was manufactured in 1886, by Karl Benz, or at least, the version of powered transport that we’d recognise to be the first car. Over the following decades, developments, improvements and refinement happened, but not at a considerable pace.
Yes there were safety improvements, power outputs climbed, comfort was better, but essentially, it was still the same animal; a driver from the 1970s could have easily stepped in to a car from the 1920s and felt relatively at home, and vice versa. Today though, the ‘motor car’ is a very different beast.
What we’re driving today is almost science-fiction for some.
Volvo Cars, like so many other manufacturers have gone through periods of transition – something a little quirky, something safe but generally unappealing, family orientated, pretend sporty, substance over style, and finally, something that combines all of their previous models – stylish, safe, still ‘robust’, sporty, and very substantial.
That’s not to do Volvo a disservice – no one could argue that the old 240 was pretty, unless that was followed by ‘safe’, but the Volvo of more recent times is everything that a car should be.
Volvo have virtually cornered the safety market – their cars are genuinely some of the safest cars on the road, so now their attention is turning to sustainability, and in typical Volvo fashion, it’s not a half-hearted attempt, or being done for marketing.
The Future of Volvo Cars
Volvo have stated that they’d like 50% of their global sales to be pure electric by 2025 – just four short years away, and for the rest of the sales to be hybrid. Not much room for manoeuvring there, that’s a solid commitment.
To do this, they’re investing around £60 million into their e-motor facility, based in Skövde. Initial plans are to assemble all e-motors there, followed by development and manufacturing for all electric motors used throughout the range.
Skövde does have some history - the very first Volvo from 1927 was powered by an engine built in the facility, and it has continued to design, develop and build engines ever since. It’s the perfect circle – responsible for the first ever engine, and for taking Volvo into the future of powertrains.
Currently, design and development of the company’s electric motors takes place in Gothenburg, Sweden and Shanghai, China. Bringing the development and production of e-motors in-house will allow Volvo’s engineers to further optimise electric motors and the entire electric driveline in new Volvos. This approach will allow engineers to make further gains in terms of energy efficiency and overall performance.
Very few manufacturers have taken such a pro-active approach to phasing our their internal combustion engine models, with a few actually pushing against the requirements being imposed by the governments of the day, but Volvo genuinely believe that doing the right thing is more than just complying with legislation.
If you’d like to see the latest line-up from Volvo cars, learn a little more about just how Volvo are making a difference, and about their commitment to better motoring, then contact one of our friendly team to make arrangements.