Volvo’s all-new XC90 – which will be launched in Stockholm – will be the first car in its range to be built on the Scalable Product Architecture (SPA) modular chassis technology developed in-house. The top-of-the-range XC90 ‘Twin Engine’ combines a two-litre, four-cylinder supercharged and turbocharged petrol engine with an electric motor and offers an unrivalled combination of power and clean operation – around 400 horsepower with carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions of around 60 g/km (NEDC driving cycle).
SPA has been under in-house development at Volvo for the past four years and is the cornerstone of the company’s ongoing USD 11bn transformation plan. It will be introduced with the all-new XC90 and then rolled out across the product range in future.
The benefits of SPA are twofold. First, the flexibility of SPA liberates Volvo’s engineers and designers, allowing them to devise and introduce a wide range of new and alluring design features at the same time as improving driveability, introducing world-first safety features, offering the latest connected car technologies and creating more interior space.
Secondly, SPA will change the way Volvo builds cars in the future by allowing a wide range of cars, powertrains, electrical systems and technologies – all of differing complexity – to be fitted on the same architecture, generating significant economies of scale. The new SPA chassis technology reduces weight and improves weight distribution, improving driving pleasure without compromising on ride comfort.
The new XC90 offers a range of Drive-E engine options, all of which provide an outstanding combination of performance and fuel-efficiency. This modular family of two-litre, four-cylinder diesel and petrol engines has several levels of turbocharging to cover the whole range from high power and torque variants to fuel-efficient versions.
SPA is also able to integrate electrification at all levels without intruding on interior space or load space. Other carmakers have struggled to combine the bulk of a battery pack with a luxurious and spacious interior, something that Volvo has managed to overcome with SPA.
SPA helps make it possible for Volvo to bolster the company’s world-leading reputation for safety without compromising on design, size or weight. Thanks to the extensive use of high-strength boron steel, SPA cars can be made more compact and safer at the same time.
Volvo is revealing the first images of the new XC90 SUV, which is distinguished by its T-shaped running lights, christened ‘Thor’s Hammer’ by the design team after the shape of the hammer used by the famous Norse god of thunder Thor.
14 August 2014
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