2011 Volvo S40Now that Volvo is no longer a part of Ford Motor Company, change is inevitable. The Swedish automaker can no longer rely on Ford to supply low-cost global platforms or new powertrains in the future, so that future may include fewer platforms and better model distinction. AutoWeek reports that Volvo will soon go from three platforms to two by adding some new models and taking away some others. On the chopping block are the S40 sedan and V50 wagon. Both have sold reasonably well, but they are reportedly too close in size to the new S60 to be retained. The V70 station wagon will cease to exist after the 2011 model year.

Doug Speck, CEO of Volvo Cars of North America, tells AW that a new vehicle is being considered that will be smaller than the S40. It would do battle against heavy hitters like the BMW 1 Series. The small sedan's all-new platform could also spawn a compact crossover to take on the likes of the BMW X1. Speck cites the feverish growth of the small luxury crossover segment as the main motivating factor to adding a smaller stablemate to the XC60 and XC90. In the short term, the larger S80 and XC90 will also be redone, better positioning Volvo to win sales in China, where large luxury rides are in high demand.

Speck also set expectations for S60 sales in the U.S. Volvo hopes to sell 15,000 to 25,000 copies of the attractive new sedan annually. Volvo sold only 5,895 copies of the outgoing S60 in 2009, though the last-gen model, which first sold way back in 2001, was very long in the tooth.

[Source: AutoWeek]