When we think about Volvo, the image of the perfect family car is immediately comes to mind. For decades, the company has prided itself on having the safest products in the market, and the brand’s strategy is designed to strengthen this idea in the collective unconscious. Volvo has a rich history in developing sports models without neglecting the elegance, reliability and sturdiness that have always characterized the iconic Swedish automaker. The c70, 142 and the unforgettable P1800 are memorable examples of Volvo’s excellent reputation through the years.
Continuing this tradition of excellence and commitment, Volvo introduced its Concept Coupe, in 2013, at major auto shows around the world. This elegant, simple and powerful model embodies the new line of general design that will take over the brand’s products, starting in 2014. The new design line upgrades the feeling of power, reliability, safety, comfort, elegance, applied technology, sophistication, audacity and sobriety that have characterized the brand since the middle of the last century.
“The last few years car design has become increasingly standardized and streamlined, and too often defined by cluttered and overly complex design,” explains Thomas Ingenlath, head of design of the Volvo Car Group. “While other brands try too hard to look luxurious and muscular, Volvo Cars will stand out as the calm, confident and naturally powerful challenger. We have no ambition to blend in, and the Concept Coupe efficiently manifests how iconic design will reinforce Volvo’s identity,”
The Concept Coupe is clearly inspired on the old P1800 and aims to give Volvo the sportsmanship it has lacked, in recent years, to compete directly with cars as renowned as the BMW i8 or the Porche 918 Spyder, both powered by hybrid powertrains. Although it was presented only as a concept car, and the company had no intention of launching its production, the model has had such favorable reception from the public and experts that executives at Volvo are evaluating the possibility of spearheading a limited production of the design, which means a fortunate few will have the pleasure of showing off one of them in their garage.
By now you might be wondering why all the fuss about Volvo’s Concept Coupe. The answer can be found in the ultra-modern twin charged 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine that powers the front wheels and an electric motor servicing the rear wheels. All-in, Volvo says the system is good for 400 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque, power numbers that will excite speed lovers, combined with technology that focuses on manageable and ecological consumption.
Undoubtedly, the Concept Coupe is a clear change in direction from the brand to introduce its products to the highly competitive sports car niche, and so far the reviews have been most auspicious. This approach suggests that starting in 2014, Volvo will still be a safe car but also fast and powerful. ■