The all-new Volvo XC70 - ongoing capable success in a refined package
- Ongoing "crossover" success
- More luxury and added capability
- Target 40,000 cars per year
- U.S. the largest market
- Sales start in August 2007
When the first XC model from Volvo Cars took to the roads in 1996, it was not only an immediate sales success; it also carved out an entirely new Cross Country segment.
Now the third generation of the Volvo XC70 steps into the spotlight at the Geneva Motor Show. With its original recipe intact - but now with added luxury and in an even more capable package than ever.
At its debut just over ten years ago, Volvo Cars expected XC sales of 15,000 cars. That became 17,500 when American buyers, above all, discovered that they could have everything that an SUV could do, but in a true premium car with a distinct Volvo feel. The term "crossover" was born.
The Volvo XC70 has retained its power of attraction ever since and the current generation reached sales of around 40,000 in its best year.
"We had a winning concept from the very outset and we have refined it continuously. The all-new XC70 maintains its tough, capable attitude while at the same time growing more comfortable. What is more, our design team has given the car a more elegant, more luxurious look," says Volvo Cars President and CEO Fredrik Arp.
Perfect for an active lifestyle
The all-new Volvo XC70 is equally at home outside that favourite downtown bistro or the opera house as it is on rough forest tracks, out in the wilderness or halfway up a mountain.
With an elevated feel in the comfortable, luxurious interior, the estate car’s functional versatility and the XC model’s All Wheel Drive and capacity, the all-new XC70 is the perfect tool for thrilling activities.
Many lifestyle cars are largely about perception and image. However, a large proportion of today’s and tomorrow’s XC70 owners choose their car because they intend to fully exploit its capabilities.
"The XC70 has primarily been created to get you to the end of the road. But it has also shown its ability to take you further if you want to and dare to. A couple of years ago, we organised a test-drive in Mexico on Baja California’s worst roads, as close to off-road as you could get. Even the most hardened adventurers were impressed by what the XC70 could handle," recalls Fredrik Arp.
The all-new XC70 flexes its muscles still further. The model is available with a six-cylinder petrol or five-cylinder turbodiesel engine. In the new model, the electronically controlled all wheel drive from Haldex of Sweden can be supplemented with the Four-C active chassis with three driving settings. Features such as Hill Descent Control and ventilated seats also contribute to a comfortable driving experience.
An American love affair
The XC70 will continue to be mainly a North American love affair. Almost half of the total annual volume of about 40,000 cars will be shipped over to North America, where the USA is naturally the largest single market.
However, the crossover model is also on the upswing in Europe, which will account for about 40 percent of total sales. Here it is Sweden that is the largest single market, followed by the United Kingdom and Germany.
The all-new XC70 will be unveiled together with the all-new V70 at the Geneva Motor Show in early March. Sales will get under way at the end of August, starting in Scandinavia. Other markets will follow gradually during the rest of 2007.
The all-new Volvo XC70 - more refined appearance but still ready for tough adventures
- More elegant and capable
- Dynamic driving protection in the right places
- More sporty exterior - without compromising functionality
- New, smart tailgate
- Interior with more premium touch and feel
The all-new Volvo XC70 has admittedly dressed up for a luxurious night out in town, but its appetite for exciting adventure is as large as ever.
"The dark-coloured plastic panels at the bottom are less obvious than on the current model. But as with exclusive outdoor clothing, the protection is placed exactly where it needs to be to withstand the rough stuff," says Volvo Cars Design Director Steve Mattin.
The large dark-coloured plastic panels on the current XC70 model have now been mostly replaced with painted surfaces. This in combination with refined lines and contours and a more dynamic rear section give the all-new XC70 a more elegant, more luxurious appearance.
But don’t be fooled into thinking the XC70 is ready to abdicate its position as the sportiest, most capable XC model. Quite the contrary.
"Imagine you are driving comfortably on an open motorway. When you look out the side window across the bleak landscape, you are surprised to be overtaken by a car driving in the rough desert with a trail a cloud of dust behind it. That was the vision and that was the car we had in our minds when we started designing the all-new XC70," explains Stefan Jansson, who is in charge of the exterior design.
Larger painted area at the front
At the front the characteristic dark nose of the current XC70 has been abandoned and replaced with a new, unique soft nose. The headlamps and grille have grown and now have the same trapezoidal shape that was first seen on the XC60 Concept in Detroit in early 2007.
In order to retain the rugged stance, the plastic panels at the corners have been emphasized around the bumper air intakes, which are more clearly pronounced.
"They look like "boxing-gloves", while the shape of the air intakes is inspired by a jet engine’s frontal profile. These lines are echoed around the red reflectors at the rear, which accordingly trace the shape of the extractors on a jet engine," explains Stefan Jansson.
The silver-coloured protective skid-plate at the front has been widened and integrated to take on a spoiler-like shape.
Tall and spacious with rippling muscles
Along the sides the contrasting, protective sections have been supplemented with a chrome moulding at the bottom of the doors to emphasise the required stance of a tall, spacious car with elegant lines and rippling muscles. The roof-rail is integrated into the A-pillar moulding.
"The framed side windows, the distinct shoulders and the clean lines create harmony between the rounded, sporty front and the spacious rear of a genuine estate car. The raised rear section is also an important element in creating the well-balanced impression," says Stefan Jansson.
The pronounced wheel housings are another important feature of the XC70 model’s confident statement that this is a highly capable car. The all-new XC70 can be specified with a variety of wheels all the way up to sporty six-spoke 18-inch alloys.
Intelligent overlapping tailgate
The rear of the all-new XC70 gives a more dynamic, more sculpted impression with the hexagonal design language taken from the remarkable glass tailgate of the new Volvo C30. The rear glass window also extends further down than the side windows to give the driver better rearward visibility.
"The shape of the outside is now more dynamic without compromising the car’s practical properties. With the help of the intelligent overlapping tailgate, which takes the tail lamps up with it when it is opened, the space inside the car is larger than before and easy to load," says Steve Mattin.
At the rear, the Volvo name on the tailgate features more pronounced lettering with wider spacing than before. A new feature that was first shown on the XC60 Concept in Detroit this year.
Luxurious and adventurous
The all-new XC70 model represents Scandinavian design at its best - that is to say every little detail has been designed with one hundred percent focus on clean lines and intelligent functionality.
Comfort in the front seat includes superb seats and ergonomically designed instruments - naturally including an elegant, super-slim centre stack and an audio system of absolute world class.
"One could say that the XC70 has a dual personality. On weekdays it’s a sophisticated and elegant car for an active urban life. Come the weekend and it transforms into a rugged partner for all kinds of exciting adventures," says Jonathan Disley, who has designed the interior of the all-new XC70.
Espresso Brown interior and royal inspiration
In addition to Sandstone Beige and Anthracite Black there is an Espresso Brown option where the warm dark colour of the seats, door panels and instrument panel contrasts with the sand-coloured detailing of the rest of the interior trim.
The special XC70 feeling inside the car has been inspired by one of the best-known patterns of Swedish design history - "Virrvarr" (Chaos or Confusion) by Swedish prince and later internationally renowned designer Sigvard Bernadotte.
"The ‘tangled’ theme in "Virrvarr" served as the inspiration for a number of details: the stitching of the leather, the cross-brushed aluminium panels and the mesh pockets at the rear. The idea is that the criss-crossing lines should be echoed throughout the interior to make the car even more exciting," says Boel Hermansson, head of colour and material design for the all-new XC70.