Amidst the turmoil surrounding the future of Volvo, the Swedish automaker is plugging away on refreshing its current line-up and offering an updated range of start-stop-equipped models. Joining the new DRIVE models at the Geneva Motor Show will be a reworked version of the automaker's flagship, the 2010 Volvo S80 sedan.
The exterior benefits from a new grille featuring an up-sized emblem, along with a splash of chrome on the lower front fascia, side skirts and underneath the rear tail lamps. A new steering wheel is fitted inside, joining a set of redesigned, XC60-inspired gauges and brushed faux-metal trim surrounding the start button and shifter.
For the U.S., the engine options remain the same, with buyers able to choose from a 235-horsepower, 3.2-liter inline-six, a 281-hp, turbocharged 3.0-liter straight six or a 311-hp, 4.4-liter V8, the latter two equipped with standard all-wheel-drive. Across the pond, a new 2.4-liter twin-turbo five-cylinder diesel putting out 175 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque will be made available, along with a choice of comfort or sport suspension setups.
The 2010 Volvo S80 will hit dealers in the U.S. this summer and is expected to carry a slight bump in its base price.
THE NEW VOLVO S80 – SMALL CHANGES THAT ADD UP TO A BIG DIFFERENCE
Volvo Cars has announced first details of the new Volvo S80 executive saloon which will be available in the UK this summer. The changes give the car a more distinctive, dynamic design and striking face, while the interior offers enhanced luxury and comfort.
The new Volvo S80 will also feature three new diesel engines, the 2.4D, D5 and the low CO2-emitting DRIVe. As well as providing the Volvo S80 with a different driving experience, the car will also benefit from lower fuel consumption and fewer emissions. The Volvo S80 will be unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show on 3 March 2009.
"The new S80 should not just be seen, it has to be experienced. The atmosphere inside is both more comfortable and luxurious. We've also made the interior more driver-oriented, with a new steering wheel and upgraded instruments," says Volvo Cars President and CEO Stephen Odell.
Detail and quality
Steve Mattin, Volvo Cars design director, and his team have increased the exterior's appeal with a number of modifications that give the S80 a lower, longer and wider stance.
The front is more distinctive with a new grille featuring the larger iron mark badge, which is part of the more extrovert DNA as seen in recent Volvo models, including the new XC60 crossover. There is also new chrome detailing on the air intakes, lower part of the doors and under the tail lamps.
The interior of the car has a clear focus on exclusivity and comfort. The soft, cosseting leather seats with matching stitching are accompanied by door panels echoing the same trim. The super-slim floating centre stack is upgraded with a Silk Metal frame that enhances its exclusive feel, while simultaneously creating a design link to the Volvo XC60.
The instruments in the new Volvo S80 feature exclusive aluminium dials and Volvo is also launching a new generation of steering wheel. The décor trim with Silk Matte metal-effect finish on the four-spoke steering wheel is also found in the gear selector and around the starter button.
New diesel engines
The new S80 will also offer a completely different driving experience due to the introduction of three diesel engines. The twin-turbo five-cylinder 2.4-litre D5 turbodiesel offers 205 horsepower, 420Nm of torque over a very wide range of engine revs. Fuel consumption (EU combined) is 45.6mpg and 164g/km CO2 emissions (preliminary figures) – a particularly low figure for a car of this size and performance level.
The upgraded Euro 4-compliant 2.4-litre diesel engine will also be available with 175 horsepower, 420Nm of torque, fuel consumption (EU Combined) at 48.7mpg and CO2 emissions of 154g/km (preliminary figures).
The Volvo S80 DRIVe model will come equipped with the same powertrain – 1.6-litre diesel engine and manual gearbox – as the smaller C30, S40 and V50 but with specially tailored engine software and different ratios in third, fourth and fifth gears. The optimised powertrain is a major aid in helping the Volvo S80 significantly cut fuel consumption and CO2 emissions to 129g/km and 57.6mpg respectively (preliminary figures).
Volvo believes the Volvo S80 is in a segment that is dominated by customers with very firm expectations on exclusiveness, driving properties and brand image.
"Customers in this segment are often very brand-loyal. In order to appear on the radar of customers currently driving competitor cars, we have to offer something that is extra. We do this by offering exclusiveness and comfort of the absolute top level. In combination with world-leading safety, this makes the new S80 very hard to beat," commented Stephen Odell.