Volvo's first ever small premium SUV
XC40 Production has Begun
A new era starts for the Volvo Cars plant in Ghent, Belgium as the first customer-bound XC40 small SUV rolls off the production line.
The new XC40, for which the company has already received more than 13,000 orders, is Volvo Cars’ first ever small premium SUV. The first customers can expect to take delivery of their new XC40 early next year.
With the XC40, Volvo Cars enters the fastest-growing segment in the automotive industry, and the car paves the way for continued sales and revenue growth for the company. Joining its larger XC60 and XC90 cousins, the XC40 completes Volvo’s global SUV line-up.
The arrival of the first XC40 will be welcomed by a number of high-profile guests, including Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel, Volvo Cars Chief Executive and President Håkan Samuelsson, and Javier Varela, Senior Vice President Manufacturing and Logistics at Volvo Cars.
“This is a proud day for Ghent, the company and all our employees here,” said Mr Samuelsson. “Our people have put in long days and many hours to prepare the plant for the start of XC40 production and they have done a great job. The XC40 represents a bright future for Ghent and for Volvo Cars.”
The new XC40 is the first model on Volvo Cars’ new modular small-car platform, the Compact Modular Architecture (CMA), which will underpin all upcoming cars in the 40 series. The CMA platform, co-developed with Geely, will provide Volvo Cars with the necessary synergies and economies of scale for the small premium car segment.
Preparations for the production start of the XC40 in Ghent have been ongoing for a long time. Considerable investments in recent years have transformed the Ghent plant into a global export hub for CMA-based cars, including an 8,000 square metre addition to the body shop.
A total of 363 new robots have been installed, including one which has been nicknamed “the Beast” by Ghent employees. This large robot, unique within Volvo Cars’ global manufacturing system, is used to lift lower car bodies to a conveyor belt close to the ceiling of the plant.
Ghent is one of two car manufacturing plants operated by Volvo Cars in Europe and has produced Volvos since 1965. Until recently it produced the first generation of Volvo’s best-selling XC60 mid-size SUV, while the Ghent plant also builds the V40 and V40 Cross Country small hatchbacks as well as the S60 and V60.
Volvo Cars’ other European plant is located in Torslanda in its home country Sweden. The company also operates two vehicle manufacturing plants in China, while a US plant is under construction in the state of South Carolina and slated for opening in the second half of 2018.
Five Star Rating
XC60 aces Euro NCAP tests
Volvo has proven the safety of its vehicles once again by "acing" Euro NCAP tests to score five stars with its new XC60 SUV.
In a competitive round of testing which saw Euro NCAP five-star ratings awarded to all nine vehicles most recently tested by Thatcham Research, Volvo set the standard in car safety.
Matthew Avery, director of research at Thatcham Research, said: “It’s exceedingly rare for a vehicle to score so favourably across the board.
The new Volkswagen Polo was also tested in October, offering a late challenge to the Seat Ibiza, Thatcham Research’s supermini safety choice of 2017 so far.
Other vehicles tested during the month were all SUVs, continuing the trend for strong safety performers in the category. The Citroën C3 Aircross, Vauxhall Crossland X, VW T-Roc, Skoda Karoq and Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross all achieved Euro NCAP 5 star ratings.
However, the Citroën C3 Aircross and Vauxhall Crossland do not come with the standard-fit AEB systems which were common among all other test subjects, including the diminutive Polo.
The XC60’s Safety Assist score of 95% is 40% above the average for cars tested this year, with its Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) system scoring maximum points when tested at highway speeds, as well as successfully avoiding collisions at all test speeds and in all scenarios.
Praising the high-scoring AEB systems fitted to the XC60, Avery said: “The XC60’s standard-fit safety technologies are excellent – or rather those that we were able to test, as its Turn Across Path and Run off Road systems are not yet a feature of the Euro NCAP programme.
“That’s how high the Volvo XC60 is above the bar set by Euro NCAP.”
Car Technology Brand of the Year
Volvo Wins Big at Car Tech Awards
• Volvo named Car Technology Brand of the Year for the second year running
• Volvo XC60 wins Best Safety Technology, Best Sat-Nav and Best Safest Car awards
Volvo has again proved its technological leadership, winning four awards at the Car Tech Awards 2018.
Volvo was named Car Technology Brand of the Year for the second year running, while the Volvo XC60 was awarded Best Safety Technology for its revolutionary Steering Support system, Best Sat-Nav for its Sensus Navigation, and Best Safest Car as a result of its remarkable Euro NCAP crash test result.
The Car Tech Awards celebrate the best in-car technology launched over the past 12 months, as voted for by the experts from buyer's guide Carbuyer and technology website Alphr.
Commenting on the awards, Stuart Milne, Editor of Carbuyer, said: "Volvo's success in the Car Tech Awards is remarkable. The company scooped Car Technology Brand of the Year for the second year in succession. Our judges were impressed by the way Volvo refuses to rest on its laurels, developing a series of products and philosophies that build on its Vision 2020, that no one will be killed or seriously injured in a new Volvo by 2020.
"These include its commitment to stop producing cars powered solely by petrol and diesel starting from 2019 – a scheme recognised by the United Nations – as well as the launch of an evasive steering system in its new XC60 and forging a close relationship with Google to develop better-connected cars. This is in addition to the continual and incremental improvement in new car technology that all customers can enjoy."
Every XC60 comes with Volvo's ground-breaking Steering Support technology as standard. This automatically provides steering assistance in an emergency to help avoid potential collisions. The judges were impressed, saying: "It should come as little surprise that a brand so closely associated with safety should take our Best Safety Technology award. The new Steering Support system is a development of the firm's City Safety system. In situations where braking alone won't avoid a collision, the XC60 is able to take charge of steering. With the system, Volvo claims a 45 per cent reduction in rear-end frontal crashes."
The XC60 was named Best Safest Car after its outstanding Euro NCAP crash test result, where it scored 98 per cent for adult occupant protection and 95 per cent for its safety assistance features.
The XC60's Sensus Navigation system – also fitted as standard to every model – was praised by the judges as well. "Its display is a model of clarity and uses the same stunning, efficient design the brand is fast becoming synonymous with. It's not style over substance, though. The large screen makes destinations easy to input, and efficient and accurate routes are displayed. The whole system is responsive, simple to use and sets a new benchmark."
Jon Wakefield, Managing Director of Volvo Car UK, said: "Winning such a wide range of Car Tech Awards highlights the breadth and quality of industry-leading technology in our cars. These innovative features are designed to make our customers' lives easier, safer and more enjoyable, and these awards prove that they do just that."
Christmas & New Year
Festive Opening Hours 2017
Christmas Eve Sunday 24th December - Closed
Christmas Day - Monday 25th December - Closed
Boxing Day - Tuesday 26th December - Closed
Wednesday 27th December - Open as normal
Thursday 28th December - Open as normal
Friday 29th December - Open as normal
Saturday 30th December - Open as normal
Sunday 31st December - Open as normal
New Years Day - Monday 1st January - Closed
Tuesday 2nd January - Open as normal
Wednesday 3rd January - Open as normal