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Volvo Cars preparing to introduce all-electric XC40 SUV; focus on safety

Volvo Cars will introduce the fully electric XC40 SUV to the public on 16 October. The company says that, in true Volvo tradition, it is also introducing one of the safest cars on the road, despite a fresh set of challenges presented by the absence of an internal combustion engine.

Regardless of what drives a car forward, be it an electric machine or combustion engine, a Volvo must be safe. The fully electric XC40 will be one of the safest cars we have ever built.

—Malin Ekholm, head of safety at Volvo Cars

While building on the excellent safety standards of the original XC40, Volvo Cars safety engineers had to redesign and reinforce the frontal structure completely to deal with the absence of an engine, meet Volvo Cars’ high safety requirements and help keep occupants as safe as in any other Volvo.

To help keep passengers safe and the battery intact in the event of a collision, Volvo Cars also developed a new and unique safety structure for passengers and battery alike in the XC40. The battery is protected by a safety cage which consists of a frame of extruded aluminum and has been embedded in the middle of the car’s body structure, creating a built-in crumple zone around the battery.

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The battery’s placement in the floor of the car also has the benefit of lowering the center of gravity of the car, for better protection against roll-overs.

Meanwhile, the car’s body structure has not just been reinforced in the front, but also at the rear. Here, the electric powertrain has been integrated in the body structure to realise a better distribution of collision forces away from the cabin and reduce the strain on people inside the car.

In terms of active safety systems, the battery-powered XC40 also introduces new technology. It is the first Volvo model equipped with a new Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) sensor platform with software developed by Zenuity, the joint venture company owned by Volvo Cars and Veoneer.

The new ADAS platform is a modern, scalable active safety system that consists of an array of radars, cameras and ultrasonic sensors. Because of its scalable nature it can easily be developed further and lays the foundation for the future introduction of autonomous drive technology.

Volvo Cars will reveal more details about the electric XC40 as the introduction approaches.

Comments

Peter_XX

So, by the end of 2019, Volvo should have electrified all new car models. Does this mean that we should wait for wonderful things to happen before the end of this year?

Ing. A.S.Stefanes

Electrified will mean (mild) hybrid also. Not EV only. But even that is a great step. Hybridization works, and more hybrids is a good thing to lower total fuel consumption.

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