Volvo was only going to build 1,000 V60 diesel plug-in hybrids a year at first, with plans to ratchet up production to somewhere in between four and 6000 over time. So many have been ordered since production started in late 2012 (the Dutch alone ordered 3,000 this year) that the Swedish automaker decided to up yearly production to 10,000, according to a CarsUK report.
Costing around $77,000 in the U.K., the plug-in diesel is expensive but the model allows European drivers to avoid so many extra government taxes and fees, buyers are more than willing to shell out the asking price.
Why is the V60 the only plug-in hybrid currently on sale? Because many automakers, including Volkswagen, determined that combining diesel and plug-in hybrid technology would prove prohibitively expensive. Clearly the market has spoken, and European buyers appear more than willing to pay the premium.
On a normal model, turning up production by as much as 10 times is no small feat. Taking into account that the V60 plug-in diesel includes many more specialized parts and materials than a traditional car and the prospect is downright daunting.
We figure that Volvo will overcome this hurdle, however, as a great deal of money and notoriety is up for grabs by increasing production.
Though it hadn’t originally planned on it, Volvo will be bringing the V60 Stateside, after all. Will the plug-in diesel hybrid follow suit? We’ll have to wait and see. For now, Volvo says “no.” But if the sales phenomenon of the European market could in any way be replicated here in the U.S., I am sure Volvo would jump at the idea.