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Every Volvo car launched from 2019 to have an electrified powertrain; “the end of the solely combustion engine-powered car”

Volvo Cars announced that every Volvo it launches from 2019 on will have an electric motor, marking the historic end of cars that only have an internal combustion engine (ICE) and placing electrification at the core of its future business.

Volvo Cars will introduce a portfolio of electrified cars across its model range, embracing fully electric cars, plug in hybrid cars and mild hybrid cars. The announcement represents one of the most wide-reaching moves by any car maker to embrace electrification. The company said that its decision highlights how—more than a century after the invention of the internal combustion engine—electrification is paving the way for a new chapter in automotive history.

This is about the customer. People increasingly demand electrified cars and we want to respond to our customers’ current and future needs. You can now pick and choose whichever electrified Volvo you wish.

—Håkan Samuelsson, president and chief executive

Volvo Cars will launch five fully electric cars between 2019 and 2021, three of which will be Volvo models and two of which will be high performance electrified cars from Polestar, Volvo Cars’ performance car arm. Full details of these models will be announced at a later date.

These five cars will be supplemented by a range of gasoline and diesel plug-in hybrid and mild-hybrid 48V options on all models, representing one of the broadest electrified car offerings of any car maker.

This means that there will in future be no Volvo cars without an electric motor, as pure ICE cars are gradually phased out and replaced by ICE cars that are enhanced with electrified options.

This announcement marks the end of the solely combustion engine-powered car. Volvo Cars has stated that it plans to have sold a total of 1m electrified cars by 2025. When we said it we meant it. This is how we are going to do it.

—Håkan Samuelsson

The announcement underlines Volvo Cars’ commitment to minimizing its environmental impact and making the cities of the future cleaner. Volvo Cars is focused on reducing the carbon emissions of both its products as well as its operations. It aims to have climate neutral manufacturing operations by 2025.

The decision also follows this month’s announcement that Volvo Cars will turn Polestar into a new separately-branded electrified global high performance car company. Thomas Ingenlath, Senior Vice President Design at Volvo Cars, will lead Polestar as Chief Executive Officer.



Most of these sold will be mild hybrids, which use 10% less gasoline than a pure petrol car. So it is not such a big deal from a fuel consumption point of view.

From a marketing POV it is great, and from a company direction POV, it is great, but I don't see it saving that much fuel for say 5 years (when PHEVs really kick in).


Toyota with their new 2018 camry le hybrid and Hyundai with their new ioniq blue hybrid recently improved significanly their fuel consumption for a reasonable price. Im almost interrested to buy but i will prefer the new nissan note e-power for even less money and best in class fuel consumption.


They will change the alternator from 12V to 48V and most likely only a few accessories will utilize 48V, most will remain with 12V. Furthermore, this concern only newly introduced vehicles; presumably many old vehicles will remain in production with 12V system for many years to come.

I agree with mahonj that this is not a big deal and that it is just good marketing.


A hand to Volvo (China) to lead the way for the mass production of various electrified cars.

Others will have to follow.


A switch to 100% electrified drivetrains means that all the steering racks, A/C systems and probably water pumps go electric also.  The end of engine-driven accessories doesn't just cut parasitic losses; it means that the supply chains require no further changeover to support any degree of electrification desired.

It also opens the door to more radical changes in the ICE.  So far we haven't seen much in the way of e.g. electrified turbochargers for low-end boost and cruising energy recovery.  I'd have to do some number crunching but I'd doubt that a midsize ICE car at cruise has less than about 5 kW of exhaust impulse power going to waste.  Going with the Atkinson cycle reduces that, but pulling even 3 kW (~4 HP) from the exhaust and feeding it back to the crankshaft is substantial and boosts economy in driving regimes where hybridization has little effect.



"it is 'just' good marketing."

That one word shows your prejudice.

Marketing is everything! Without market branding and customer loyalty the cars (status or luxury ) won't sell.

E.P. alludes to the commitment to modernisation that is important.

Late '90's the auto industry was touting the shift to 48V systems and concluding that 24V or 36V was unlikely as an interim step.

Since then the battery motive side of the market has taken off and the dinosaurs are becoming pretty obvious.

This is an all too common example and is symbolic of the end of profiting from pollution.

" a new class-action lawsuit against Fiat Chrysler (FCA) and Cummins charging that the automaker knowingly sold more than 135,000 RAM 2500 and 3500 trucks over the past four model years equipped with a Cummins diesel engine with a defect in the selective catalytic converter (SCR) system used for NOx control. The defect leads to lower fuel economy, non EPA-compliant emissions levels, and costly and frequent vehicle repairs, the complaint charges."

Volvo uses an integrated, crankshaft-mounted alternator in their plug-in hybrids. I expect to see better than the typical mild hybrid approach from them.

They have developed a drivetrain that gives them a very good path forward to electrification. This is not just a marketing exercise.

I've driven the XC90 T8 and was impressed. Not your dad's Volvo.


Supply chains are developing new electrified products for vehicle markets. The entire industry is in the throes of best value for customer wants. Cheap cars probably will remain plain gasoline technology. More expensive cars will be hybrid that offer better performance, quality, and economy. The mild hybrid approach, wherein the customer gets the biggest bang for the buck will dominate "electrified" car sales. To that end the industry is in a development stage. The Prius style hybrid probably not the ideal as the cost and size limitations. The Nissan Note interesting technology, hybrid turbo, 48v systems, and the lower weight materials. It does look like a transition is occurring to maximise the benefit of heavy weight expensive batteries to maximize ICE efficiency and lower emissions. The majority of customers want fast refueling and minimal driver responsibility. I do believe the most popular vehicle will exploit the strengths of technology to complement vehicle operation and lower purchase cost. Grid power may lose attractiveness.

Of course doubling up on venture risk is the hydrogen fuel cell, natural gas, biofuel, and the ever improving autonomous, solar cell, ICE technologies. It may well be were within a transportation revolution. Public transportation will definitely be a loser. Even air transport.

The Lurking Jerk

Count me as not in the 'just good marketing' camp. This IS in fact a bold move- the first major manufacturer to cease offering a straight gasser is bold. Now I'm hoping to see the next step in hybrid range-extender engines: OPOC configs and linear generator configurations. Fuel economy can go sky-high once this happens. And once that happens, the price of liquid fuel won't matter as much, because you're using so little of it. That means the liquid fuel can reasonably be derived from renewable sources.

I'm watching the Toyota Linear Generator efforts closely... I wish more companies would get in this game.

I bought a Prius Prime Plus on March 3rd, and I'm still on my 3rd tank of gas. I love the car and I have discovered many side benefits. For example, stop-and-go traffic: on battery power I'm not polluting, not generating excessive heat, and with the electric ac compressor running just fast enough, I can stay comfortable. Was a big help while waiting in line to see the fireworks the other day.


My Fusion Energi is now 4 years old, pushing 40k miles and reports a lifetime average of 129.8 MPG (which does not include evaporative losses).  4 years on and I've burned barely more than 300 gallons in the thing.  It's glorious.

We'd have to employ some trickery to fully replace gasoline with a combination of battery-electric and biofueled sustainer engines, but I have little doubt it could be done.


@Ep, it may be that we do not have to completely eliminate the use of gasoline, just greatly reduce it (across the board). PHEVs are one way of doing this. Range extender EVs are another, car swapping is yet another.

Hybrids are a gateway drug to PHEVs and mild hybrids a further gateway.

The only problem I see is that as you reduce the use of gasoline, the price falls, making it harder to replace.


Fossil gasoline can only get so cheap before it isn't worth drilling for petroleum any more.  At some point, it becomes such a small expense that sin taxes on it will gain some traction and shove it out entirely.

We're probably better off using M85 anyway, and methanol is easily and cheaply made from natural gas if we run out of bio-based feedstock.  Just tax it to keep it the second choice and it won't be a problem.


Hats off to the PR department at Volvo! Tesla will take all of the oxygen out of the room this month with the Model 3, so even though Volvo is basically doing squat on electrification, they pot together a well-times press release! Here's what is going on:

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