Back in February, we reported that Volvo would be eliminating its remaining R-badged offerings in the future; specifically the S60R and V70R. At the time, there was discussion that other models in Volvo's line-up may get R-worthy tweaks when these two models were nixed. Another rumor that Volvo may kill off the "R" designation altogether was floated, and although we thought it was unlikely, we figured time would tell.
Tell it has, and according to an article in Automotive News, the 2007 model year will be the last for the Rs.
Slow sales of both the S60R and V70R were the final nails in the coffin of Volvo's hotted-up models, which originally began with the T5R back in 1995. While US sales of these high performance sedans were the highest of any country, the numbers haven't justified the extra expense here or abroad, leading to Volvo's decision.
Thankfully, Fredrik Arp, Volvo's CEO, made it clear that Volvo will continue to develop more driver-focused machines -– pointing out the new C30 hatch and V8-powered S80 –- so the automaker is merely deleting the consonant, but its ethos will remain intact.
However, don't expect anything soon, as Arp is quoted as saying that, "We are working on the next phase, but it will not be immediate." So does that mean no AWD, 250+ HP C30? We hope not, but again, time will tell.
[Source: Automotive News (Sub. Req.)]