In a roundtable discussion with journalists in Detroit, Volvo executives detailed their strategy for reviving the brand’s fortunes in the United States. The Swedish automaker owned by China’s Geely is on track to sell 60,000 units this year, down from a high of 139,000 in 2004. The strategy includes more leasing and a new, global ad agency, but this is still an industry where product is king and Volvo will also be introducing new powertrains and new vehicles. The company is investing $11 billion over the next five years on new products and factories. The initial effort will be the launch of a redesigned XC90 crossover late next year.
CEO Hakan Samuelsson wants to position Volvo as a “unique premium brand” that competes with BMW, Audi and Mercedes-Benz, a Swedish alternative to the German brands. (Read More…)