Volvo plans to produce only electric cars at its South Carolina, factory ahead of factories in other markets.
In an interview with Automotive News Monday, CEO Hakan Samuelsson said the factory will be the first one building all-electric cars, implying it will reach that milestone before factories in Europe and China. However, this wasn’t mentioned when Volvo announced another round of investment in the factory earlier this month.
These comments were made during a local event at the South Carolina plant last week; Volvo spokesperson Russell Datz clarified to Green Car Reports that the current 2030 plan calls for all Volvo factories to transition to making EVs.
The factory is located in Ridgeville, South Carolina, but is fairly close to Charleston, the state’s largest city and principal economic hub.
Motor Authority builds a 2019 Volvo S60
The Automotive News piece also said that production ramp-up for an electric version of the Volvo XC90 crossover SUV will begin next year, ahead of the model’s planned 2023 launch. The South Carolina factory will serve as an export hub for the electric XC90 initially.
The next-generation XC90 will be produced with a novel approach—essentially allowing the same vehicle to be built on two platforms. As Volvo’s de facto flagship, it will also introduce new technologies, such as integrated lidar and more advanced driver aids.
The XC90 will be followed in 2024 by an electric version of the smaller XC60 SUV. Sibling brand Polestar was already confirmed that the Polestar 3 SUV, due in 2022, will be built in South Carolina as well.
Volvo is also building a European battery factory with fellow Swedish firm that will initially supply the electric XC60 for that market. A different facility could potentially supply the United States factory, however.
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