Auto Car Awards, Hakan Samuelsson
10:00 PM | August 24 2020

Volvo CEO and former design chief receive major Autocar awards

Top accolades from leading car magazine Autocar recognise Volvo’s many successes as well as the career of one of its well-known designers.
Volvo Cars CEO Håkan Samuelsson and former Volvo designer Peter Horbury have received major recognition in the 2020 Autocar Awards.
 
Samuelsson (main picture) was given the highest accolade of the awards, which are run by one of the UK’s most highly respected car magazines. Each year, these awards celebrate cars, technical achievements and inspiring leaders.
 
The Volvo CEO was awarded the Issigonis Trophy – named after legendary engineer and inventor of the Mini, Sir Alec Issigonis – for the company’s “phenomenal success”.
 
Autocar’s list of achievements included bringing Volvo’s brand image level with premium rivals, doubling annual car sales, and leading global initiatives on safety, electrification, and autonomous driving.
 
Autocar editor-in-chief Steve Cropley praised Håkan Samuelsson for his “eight-year overhaul of the company” while maintaining Volvo’s traditional Swedish values.
 
“Under Samuelsson's calm but inspired leadership, Volvo's brand equity has been raised to the level of Audi's or BMW's, yet there has still been time and space to establish Polestar, Volvo's all-electric premium partner-brand that now promises success on a second front. No other company leader in recent times has inspired and led such rapid yet sustainable progress."
Autocar Awards, Peter Horbury
Above: Peter Horbury, former head of design at Volvo Cars, has been honoured with a Lifetime Achievement award from Autocar.

Peter Horbury, former head of design at Volvo Cars and now design chief at its parent company Geely, received the Lifetime Achievement award.
 
The UK-born designer helped transform the look of Volvos after becoming head of design in 1991, starting a long association with the company.
 
Horbury, who became senior vice president design at the Geely Group in 2011, highlights two Volvos particularly central to his career: the 1992 ECC concept and 2002 XC90.
 
He told Autocar that the ECC – Environmental Concept Car – was “the car that allowed me to change Volvo forever”. Its design influenced the S80 luxury sedan and the rest of the Volvo range.
 
And Horbury described the XC90, Volvo’s first ever SUV, as “the pinnacle of the new look”.
 
“We gave our [XC90] design strength, but not too much,” he told Autocar. “It was confident but not a street fighter like all those Fords and GMCs. It had a transverse engine so we could move the occupants forward to give more space, a priority.”
 
The Volvo XC90 was a big sales success from its introduction in 2002, eventually replaced by an award-winning second-generation version in 2015.
 

 

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