Volvo is considering a much deeper integration with its sister Geely brands from China, according to a report from Edmunds.
The Swedish carmaker is one of several auto brands owned by the Chinese manufacturer, which operates the Englon, Emgrand and Gleagle brands in China. According to company insiders quoted by Edmunds, Volvo is discussing technology tie-ups with these brands, as the future could bring sufficient technological alignment to allow for a sharing of components and platforms.
The move would allow Volvo to achieve economies of scale that will make it more competitive on the global market. Volvo’s new CEO, Hakan Samuelsson, also wants to boost the company’s Chinese sales to offset slumping demand in Europe. By improving staff training, adding new dealerships and communicating more effectively the Volvo safety image, Samuelsson says the company aims to reverse a 9 percent fall in Chinese sales.
The mission is very important as Volvo will begin operating a plant in Chengdu in 2013. The Swedish carmaker is looking to the arrival of a new in-house platform family that will eventually yield replacements for all its current models except the small V40 hatch. The first model to use the new platform will be the replacement for the XC90 SUV, scheduled for 2014.