The President reveals which Volvo we will see on our roads in the near future: «We are starting a new journey with the fully electric EX90 which will be available as early as the first months of 2024. It has a range of more than 600 km»
When the Mont Blanc tunnel is opened, Gino Cervi translates Commissioner Maigret Nutella was born on TV and in the factories of Ferrero, the Bolognese dealer brought the first Volvo to our country from Sweden: it was 1964. But the official history of the brand in Italy begins in 1973, when Volvo AB takes over the shares of the then importer to give life to the national branch.. Today, 50 years later, the brand’s relationship with our country – which represents one of the most important European markets – has become closer and more well-known, to the extent that Nopen the center of Milan there is a space where everyone, customers and non-customers, are invited to know about new products, but also to discuss and entertain. “Volvo studio launched in 2017 with the XC40,” he explains Michele Crisci, president and CEO of Volvo Car Italia – and soon we will host another very important launch.”
What are the favorite cars of Italians?
“The XC40 is the best-selling car today, followed by the XC60 and XC90. However, they will gradually be replaced by all the cars that arrive, with platforms born to be fully electric: Volvo is moving from endothermic engines, which will soon be abandoned, to fully electric ones, which have amazing advantages from the handling area, a pleasant driving view, space in the passenger compartment and an exterior design, which will be very innovative».
Like the EX90. What do you expect from this car?
“A new beginning: in 2014 we launched new wave of Volvo and the XC90, a great success worldwide, which also led to the introduction of a stylistic language that is also found on the XC60 and XC40. Now we start a new journey with the EX90, the all-electric XC90 that will be available as early as the first months of 2024. It is a car that can combine the beauty of its design with the power of its engine – it develops more than 500 horsepower – of course without the effect of weather . And above all, it has a range of more than 600 km».
What will the model present as the world premiere in Italy be?
“When our CEO Jim Rowan presented the EX90, behind it we saw the outline of a small car, and therefore suitable for the Italian market: this is the direction that Volvo wants to take, without betraying its shapes and family feelings. Because it is clear that the effort electrification must be done for vehicles that are more affordable.”
From 2030, all your frequencies will be electric only. How will you reach the goal?
“Our turnaround time for this change is very fast: Volvo had already announced in 2019 that all cars launched from then on will be connected to the electric supply. This has happened immediately, and the commercial performance of the Recharge range has surprised us (part of the models of hybrid electricity and plug-ins in the first quarter of the year reached 41% of the company’s total sales worldwide, 62% in Europe. ; the share of complete electrical equipment stood at 18%, ed.).We are ahead of time because we believe it is important to move in this direction and we also do so with a very open dialogue with our suppliers. We want all the companies that work with us to agree to the principle of sustainability that points to climate-neutral production: in the extraction of raw materials, in the production of unfinished products, in the creation of batteries, to recycling. of these devices and in the spaces that will be used by those who supply our cars. Our businessmen are called these days to review their designs to make them neutral from the point of view of environmental impact».
A car today is considered a service, how are the ways of use changing?
“In this phase of transition, consumption habits and the ways in which consumers enter the world of cars also change. Alongside ownership, which is still very present in the Italian market today, leasing is growing well, offering a series of benefits and services: tire change , assistance, courtesy car … Moreover, systems that work through smartphones. I believe that this will be the future and, from this point of view, we are moving forward very quickly for customers by offering, through programs and subscription payments, a total of the mobility needs of the contract holder and family: from business to vacation to the Sunday trip. In addition, again through the program, we are testing in Milan with the electric car sharing service, ELEC3City, offered to those who develop their business within the district, in this case Porta Nuova».
But traditional sales are struggling to open…
“Because of these new formulas and changes we have to get used to having an Italian market of around 2 million cars: I don’t think it will come back. Today we are around 1.4 million and the estimate for the next few years is 1.6. The irreversible fall of diesel and, a little bit slower, also of gasoline is clear. Pure endothermics are declining, while the most important engine has become hybrids without recharging. Plug-in hybrids and Bevs are not going away. Between the main market we are the last in terms of electricity supply and, at the end of 2022, our country was the only one that went backwards compared to the previous year. According to this year’s estimate we should close around 65,000 units, which is still very little compared to the market of 1.5 million. Basically, by 2026-27 we should reach around 300-350,000 cars».
2035: if there should be a limit on the production of polluting cars, will Italy do it?
“There is no doubt, but we need to clarify a fundamental point: the technologies of the future will not be those of the internal combustion engine. We have rightly accepted the goals of zero CO2, which today can only be achieved with electric or hydrogen engines. E-fuel and biofuel , on the other hand, they need combustion that produces emissions. Also, it is important to understand that the transition will be gradual. According to statistics, in 2030 the rotating ships should have 34 million endotherms and six million electric ones, so we can imagine that in 2035 there may be 10-11 million electric cars, but 20-23 million endothermics. are still in circulation. Bioenergy can be used for these, if the technology allows. we should not be confused: it is one thing to talk about the technology of the future, it is another using clean fuel on current technologies».
And who works in the “traditional” automotive supply chain?
“We need an industrial transformation strategy: 60% of the sales shown by Italian equipment, which is excellent, are made by foreign orders – from German, French, Korean, Chinese brands – which have already decided that from 2030 they will all go. to ‘electricity. So, what will happen to this huge chunk of sales if we don’t change quickly? Is it worth defending the status quo or investing to be competitive with tomorrow’s technology? We will succeed, but we must take the right path. And the right path is never to reject the future, but to embrace it».
May 16, 2023, 5:27 pm – Updated May 16, 2023, 5:52 pm
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