Preferred Bidder Geely Planning Up To Three New Models For Volvo

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2010 Volvo S60

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Ford has done all but confirm Chinese automaker Geely as the new owner of Volvo, which the Blue Oval has been trying to sell for the past 18 months.

Where the Geely deal would leave Volvo's future lineup is uncertain. The Swedish automaker recently unveiled its 2010 XC60 crossover and a refreshed C70 Convertible, with a new S60 sedan to come early next year. A delay in any other model programs of six to 12 months is likely during a transition in ownership, but then what?

Sources close to the Geely have revealed to the Wall Street Journal that under its ownership Volvo would launch two or three bigger and more luxurious models within the next four years to try and boost global sales, eventually hoping to reach the one million vehicle mark within five years. Volvo currently sells around 400,000 vehicles per year worldwide.

Quite ambitious certainly, but with access to the lucrative Chinese market Geely could build and sell up to 200,000 vehicles per year for sale in the rapidly growing market.

According to a previous report, Geely hopes to start production of Volvo cars in a new factory in the Guangdong Province of China. As part of the deal, Geely will reportedly invest up to $10 billion in building the Volvo brand and the first model to be fully designed under the guidance of the Chinese automaker will be the next-generation XC90 due in 2011.

Sources at Volvo have told that a future relationship with China would leave Sweden as the center of product planning, marketing and some initial engineering. Geely's China-based engineers would execute mid-level engineering and manufacturing development at a savings of up to 30 percent from high-cost Sweden. Volvo would also produce a model in a Geely factory in China to expand the brand's global presence, but the goal would be to leverage Volvo's reputation and brand value, teamed with lower-cost Chinese manufacturing.

[Wall Street Journal]

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Comments (6)
  1. Good point r4i kort. I'd also like to add that Geely will be able to use Volvo's safety technology to get its cars up to Western safety standards almost overnight and finally get to bring its cheap Chinese-produced cars to the U.S.

  2. Once Volvos are manufactured in China - Volvo will be permanently off my shopping list.

  3. If Geely takes over Volvo, I can honestly say that the name Volvo will be tossed in the junk shop along with poorly made toys found in the $.99 hut next to the Taco Bell. They will destroy a beautiful car company.
    Ford doesn't care who is sells it to, because it's squeezed out whatever safety and styling juice it could and now is looking for the best price and a quick way out.

  4. I would never, NEVER buy a Chinese Volvo. Ford is running full speed to one of the worst mistakes in their history. I just don't understand how getting rid of one of the most prestigious brands -certainly much more than Lincoln or Mercury- helps them mid or long term.

  5. I will buy a Chinese Volvo as long as Geely can maintain the quality. Besides, it could be more affordable like the beautiful XC60.

  6. I believe it's wishful thinking to even hope that a China-made Volvo will retain the quality of units made in Sweden. Even worse, that Geeley will actually retain the brand. That's NOT going to happen. Take it from someone who lives and does business in Asia and has had first-hand experience with China-made products. I sadly have to agree with all the others who have expressed dismay over the impending sale by Ford (which now just wants to recover what it can) to Geeley.

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