Senior vice president Lex Kerssemakers, left, stands with design boss Thomas Ingenlath
Despite referencing past models, the Concept Coupe features forward-looking design
Although a very different proposition, design themes seen here will appear on the next-gen XC90
The Coupe sets the tone for Volvo's vision of premium motoring in the future
It is based on the SPA platform, which will also be used to underpin the new XC90
The Concept Coupe features subtle nods to the company's P1800 coupe concept
The car previews Volvo's new design direction
Many of the car's features are compatible with autonomous driving technologies
Much of the interior of the car is still unknown
The Concept Coupe's designer says the car projects "confidence"
Volvo is still working on the final iteration of its front grille
LED headlights and side lights are said to feature on the concept
The concept is expected to use at least a part-digital dashboard
The concept is underpinned by Volvo's SPA platform, which will form the basis of a number of new cars
Style and premium quality are key points for the concept
Volvo says the concept isn't just a futuristic concept car, but will reach production
Volvo plans to bring connectivity to more of its cars
The Concept Coupe will be powered by one of Volvo's new Drive-E four-cylinder petrol units
The SPA modular platform will first be seen on a production car with the new XC90
That means a production Concept Coupe could be seen as early as next year
The Concept Coupe is a hybrid, using both a combustion engine and an electric motor
Initial sketches show the radical departure from traditional Volvo design
Seating is said to be supportive and comfortable
Interior space and comfort will be key for the success of the concept
Volvo says the Concept Coupe will use a natural interface, which it sees as key to the new generation of car buyers
The first Volvo to be penned by design chief Thomas Ingenlath, who arrived at the firm last year has again been seen at the Tokyo motor show.
The Volvo Concept Coupe is underpinned by Volvo’s versatile new Scalable Product Architecture (SPA) platform, and powered by one of the firm’s new Drive-E four-cylinder petrol engines mated to a hybrid system for performance equivalent to a V8. The model has already been seen at the Frankfurt motor show.
The SPA will first appear on a production car next year with the all-new XC90. But Volvo has chosen to preview the architecture on a coupe to showcase its versatility, and how it has "liberated designers and engineers from the limitations of previous cross-brand platforms", a reference to Volvo’s current Ford-derived underpinnings.
"The Volvo Concept Coupe is no futuristic dream car," said Ingenlath. "It is designed to demonstrate the capability of our new architecture: the confident stance, the proportions and the most prominent design signatures.
"Even though the XC90 is an entirely different type of car, you will recognise the connection instantly when it is revealed next year."
The Concept Coupe previews Volvo’s new corporate front-end, complete with a slimmer ‘floating’ radiator grille and headlight design, the headlights featuring Volvo’s new T-shape LED daytime running lights.
"We are still working with the final interpretation of the grille and the iron mark and this will be revealed together with the XC90 next year," said Ingenlath.
The sleek two-door coupe also features subtle nods to Volvo’s iconic P1800 coupe, without descending into being retro, according to Ingenlath.
Volvo’s new interior design is also featured on the concept, including a large touchscreen in the centre console, head-up display and handcrafted leather, wood and glass trim.
The SPA is also compatible with autonomous driving features, some of which will be introduced with the XC90 next year including a system that automatically steers to avoid accidents.
"There is a natural integration of user interfaces in our new car generation," said Ingenlath. "Interaction with pleasure but without distraction is the key. We bring connectivity to our cars and make them both more enjoyable and safe."
Power for the concept comes from a new turbocharged and supercharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine from Volvo’s new Drive-E engine to family to power the front wheels, and an electric motor and battery pack to power the rear wheels.
Combined power is rated to around 395bhp, and torque at around 442lb ft.
The Concept Coupe is to be joined by at least two other Volvo concept designs in the coming months, which will help to establish the brand's new design direction.
Volvo has tripled its sales in Japan to 18,000 units in recent months. Speaking at the Tokyo motor show, the company revealed the 2014 Volvo XC90 would be available with a hybrid powertrain, and that a super-efficient SPA platform-based diesel engine would be coming to Japan soon. The new engine is Euro6 emissions compliant, has 190bhp on tap and will return up to 60mpg when connected to S60 and V60 models.
Mark Tisshaw & Hilton Holloway