For Volvo, 2017 marks the 90th year of producing singular vehicles for an often singular audience. Virtually unknown in the U.S. prior to World War II, Volvo established a niche reputation in the United States (mainly in the Northeast) during this country's first import invasion. And while safety innovation is what established that reputation in the '60s and '70s, newscaster Walter Cronkite raced a Volvo in the '50s, and retired general Colin Powell famously repaired them in the '90s. Until 2010 Volvo was an integral part of Ford's Premier Automotive Group, a consortium of luxury carmakers owned and managed by Ford Motor Company. With Ford deciding to concentrate on its core product following the most recent economic downturn, Volvo was sold to China's Geely, which has injected both capital and immediacy into a new product portfolio. Most Volvo product continues to come from Sweden, but the carmaker has introduced a built-in-China variant of its S60 sedan to the U.S. marketplace.
On today's Volvo showroom a consumer can find a select range of sedans, wagons and crossovers. The least expensive Volvo is a value-spec S60, with a window sticker beginning in the mid-$30s. And the most fun Volvo is the Polestar version of the smallish sedan, with more power connected to a more capable chassis. Despite its lower price point, however, the S60 is not the most popular; that tag goes to the new(ish) XC90, offering 3-rows of Scandinavian style in combination with Swedish safety. And the XC90 is also the brand's most expensive, with at least one trim level - XC90 Excellence - exceeding $100,000.
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