Geely isn't wasting any time in shaping up its newest acquisition's product line. The Chinese automaker officially completed its deal to purchase Volvo from Ford earlier this week, and already the Swedish brand's new chairman is making noises about a new large luxury sedan to go toe to toe with the likes of the BMW 7 Series and Mercedes-Benz S-Class. Li Shufu, Volvo chairman and co-chair of Geely, said that the brand already competes with luxury German carmakers in most markets, but lacks all of the hardware to do so effectively. To remedy the problem, Li wants to put the rush on a new saloon to take the fight to the Bavarians.
According to the Financial Times, Volvo repeatedly ran into roadblocks when it attempted to develop a large four-door under Ford. Evidently the Blue Oval was concerned about a long-wheelbase Swede nabbing sales from Jaguar – another brand Ford owned at the time. A new Volvo sedan is far from a done deal, though. Li says that the thought of a range-topping sedan is his, and he'll have to convince the company's new board to give it the green light. With an ambitious goal to double Volvo to 600,000 units in five years primarily through growth in large-car loving China, a D-segment player sounds like a good bet – at least for select markets.
[Source: Financial Times – reg. req.]