Volvo's hybrid hopes
Volvo expects that a quarter of all the cars it sells in Europe in 2020 will be plug-in hybrids, up from 10% in 2019. It has tripled factory capacity for them and prioritised their production to cut lead times. It will also launch its first electric car, the XC40 P8 Recharge, this year. “This is the year in which electrification goes from a niche to a significant business to lay down the future,” said Volvo’s boss for Europe, Björn Annwall.
Kia's professional appeal
Less than 10% of e-Niro buyers are existing Kia owners, creating a good opportunity to bring new consumers to the brand. Kia UK boss Paul Philpott said: “We’re not seeing people leave Kia products to go to the e-Niro. It’s mostly professional people [buying the model]. There’s a disproportionate number of doctors on the list!”
VW's transatlantic Golf
While the regular Mk8 Volkswagen Golf won’t reach the US, where pick-up trucks and large SUVs dominate, the forthcoming Golf R hot hatch will. “The Mk7 Golf R is a huge success there,” said R division boss Jost Capito. “In the US, car dealers measure success by the days a car spends on the lot; the Golf R averages two days and sells overpriced.”