The New York Times is calling to an “audacious reinvention” of itself. We’re calling it the next clear move for Volvo, an automaker that has always thrived on the fringe of mainstream automotive consciousness to be the “cool choice for many. The move: they’re going to a single chassis architecture.
The reality is that this is a brilliant move. “Scalable Product Architecture” means that many of the components will be used across all of their various models. In the past, the challenge has always been to get the right amount of this or that to work with the different sizes and configurations, but modern automotive technology makes it easy to squeeze 250+ horsepower out of a small engine. With vehicles ranging in size from the S40 up to a seven-seater with the XC90, they will need to have multiple configurations to match the workload.
This could be the most important part of their success both long-term and short-term. They have had their share of ups and downs over the last decade and have not pushed into the level of relevancy that they had hoped to achieve by now. This move is something that could work to their advantage from two fronts: cost savings and driver appeal. The concept resonates; drivers like to know that their cars have an abundance of parts available to them without the need to special order anything. It also brings focus to the power of the technology behind their engine itself. If they can play on that, this could turn into a great move for the company.
If they can’t, they may find themselves in financial trouble by the end of the decade.
According to the NY Times:
Basing Volvo’s entire model line on a single engine design is not as unorthodox as it sounds. Many automakers envision a 2-liter turbo 4 as their more efficient engine of the future.
Read More: NY Times