What's Wrong With This Picture: BMW By Volvo Edition

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer

Customers in this segment want emotional appeal, sporty design and dynamic driving properties. The S60 has it all. We are convinced that it will be one of the strongest contenders around

Volvo CEO Stephen Odell explains in the press release for the new S60 why people who buy 3 Series sedans don’t cross-shop Volvo… and why he wants to expand his brand so that someday they might. But leaving aside the sad fact that every luxury brand wants to build “the new 3 Series,” we’re having a hard time figuring this move out. Considering that Volvo is about to get a Chinese-style upscale overhaul, expect the “dynamic driving properties” part of the “what does Volvo stand for this week” exercise to fall off the radar with haste. And really, Volvo makes a lot more sense as a Euro-tinged, safety-forward alternative to Lexus and (in China) Buick than a BMW wannabe.

Edward Niedermeyer
Edward Niedermeyer

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  • Mhadi Mhadi on Nov 12, 2009

    I agree that now is not the time to sell Volvo - the brand can only go up as witnessed by increased sales. The Chinese will destroy Volvo- their idea is to increase sales through design only. Garish cars with no substance or engineering advantage. Ironically Volvo rejected a merger with Renault over 20 years ago because Renault was considered an inferior company that could bring nothing to Volvo.

  • Kristjan Ambroz Kristjan Ambroz on Nov 12, 2009

    The brand stands for slightly different things in different geographies - as pointed out in some places BMW is a status symbol, in several others rather an embarassment. And this tends to change with time as well. As for Volvo, I thought the comment about Volvo firing its loyal customers was very apt. Many aspects of the cars have suffered from Volvo trying to be a BMW, and to be honest, I cannot see any developments that made things better to compensate. Driving dynamics are still pretty poor, compared to the rest of the competition, while the durability, interior quality, ergonmics and pace utilisation have consistently taken small steps back, rather than forward.

  • Accs Accs on Nov 29, 2009

    This always bothered the hell out of me... People who bought 240s, and 7/960s.. were decent looking cars that were different. Id like to know.. why a reputable and swedish car maker.. that makes a standard Swedish domestic vehicle.. would want to throw that away and go after the germans for luxo and extra equipment? What is / was wrong with just building those old 240s, 7/940s? Now VOLVO is trying to go after BMW / MB. (Actually.. they HAVE been going after zee germans for quite a long time.) Then again... Id also like to know.. what BMW / MB actually have over a Volvo? I actually have a slight fondness for the C30 and or a R sport model of any sedan / wagon that Volvo makes.