Volvo has prioritised the development of an entry-level SUV as part of a broader future model strategy instigated by its new boss, Stefan Jacoby.
Aimed at significantly increasing sales in Europe, where Volvo has seen market share plummet in recent years, the new four-wheel drive is also being looked upon to provide a basis for planned production activities in China following the Swedish car maker’s recent purchase by Geely.
The compact SUV, due to hit UK showrooms by the end of 2013 and be sold under the name XC30, has been conceived to compete on performance, features and price with the new BMW X1 as well as the upcoming Audi Q3 and a junior off-roader presently under development at Mercedes-Benz, expected to be called the GLC.
Based on a four-wheel-drive version of the existing C30’s contemporary unitary platform, known internally as the P1 structure, the XC30 is being conceived to provide Volvo with increased appeal among younger buyers.
It’s also being designed to provide the sort of profitability achieved by the XC60, the company’s best-selling model.