Volvo will build more Cross Country models in future and exploit the brand more aggressively, according to the firm’s vice-president of product strategy, Lex Kerssemakers.
Speaking at the Detroit motor show, where the Volvo S60 Cross Country was revealed, Kerssemakers admitted he had been surprised by the interest in the high-riding saloon.
“If you had asked me 18 months ago if we would have been doing this I would have said it wouldn’t be our first priority,” he explained. “But we are starting to see sales growth of Cross Country models, and we are starting to really believe in the potential of the brand. We want to reinject some energy into it as we see it as a concept that can really grow in the future.
“The XC models are clearly for people who want an SUV; Cross Country models offer some of the benefits and looks, without the same capability or price. So long as Cross Country models have some capability - all-wheel drive, hill descent control - then they are giving customers what they want, and that is enough for them to be considered authentic.”
Kerssemakers added that when the Volvo S60 Cross Country goes into production early this year, it will have taken eight months from work beginning on it to completion. “It’s an incredibly short time to create a car in this business, but that agility and speed of reaction is a clear benefit of being a smaller, independent company,” he said.
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