Charge on! Every new Volvo will have an electric motor starting in 2019

2017 Volvo V90 Cross Country
Ronan Glon/Digital Trends
Volvo is saying “yes!” to electrification by starting a high-voltage revolution. Beginning in 2019, every new car the Swedish company introduces will come equipped with at least one electric motor. It’s a bold strategy that underlines its commitment to shrinking the size of its carbon footprint.

Buyers in the market for a Volvo around the turn of the decade will have three basic powertrain options to choose from. The first is a brand-new, 48-volt mild hybrid system. It captures the kinetic energy generated while braking, stores it in a compact battery pack, and feeds it to a small motor attached to the side of the internal combustion engine. The motor improves gas mileage and reduces harmful emissions, but it can’t power the car on its own for any significant distance.

The midrange option will be a plug-in hybrid called Twin Engine in Volvo-speak. The technology is already offered on bigger Volvo models like the S90 and the XC90, and it will be available on the 2018 XC60 before the end of the year. Currently, plug-in models can drive on electricity alone for about 20 miles. They’ll go further as the technology improves.

Finally, Volvo has pledged to launch no less than five all-electric models between 2019 and 2021. Three of them will join the Volvo lineup, and two of them will be part of Polestar, the brand’s newly established performance division. Henrik Green, Volvo’s vice president of research and development division, told Digital Trends the first pure electric car will be a compact car built on the modular CMA platform. The yet-unnamed model will be made in China and exported to markets all around the globe.

Broadly speaking, automakers are adopting electrification to meet the strict regulations looming in key markets like the United States and China. Volvo explains its decision wasn’t influenced by government regulations. Instead, it’s responding to market demand.

“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,” said company CEO Håkan Samuelsson in a statement.

Volvo has previously stated it aims to sell 1 million electrified cars by 2025. The announcement to electrify its entire portfolio worldwide finally sheds insight into how the company will reach its goal. What will happen to its current, nonelectrified powertrains after 2019 hasn’t been decided yet.

“Existing cars with full [internal combustion] powertrains will be adjusted in the future according to market demands. There is no set timetable for that yet,” a company spokesperson told Digital Trends.

Cars

Rivian CEO R.J. Scaringe wants his startup to be the Patagonia of electric cars

Rivian is the latest startup hyping new electric cars. But unlike most other startups, Rivian is focusing on off-road vehicles. It launched an electric pickup truck and SUV at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show. CEO R.J. Scaringe explains the…
Cars

600-hp, $155K Polestar 1 is the alluring Volvo coupe you’ve been waiting for

Volvo's return to the coupe segment just took an interesting turn: the model will join the Polestar lineup, and it will get a 600-hp plug-in hybrid powertrain. The Polestar 1 will be built in China starting in 2019.
Cars

Volkswagen may be planning a tougher challenge for its all-electric I.D. R

The Volkswagen I.D. R electric race car may head to the Nürburgring in 2019 for a lap-record attempt, according to a new report. Volkswagen will reportedly aim to set the quickest lap time ever by an electric car.
Cars

Aston Martin bets classic car owners will choose volts over carburetors

Aston Martin has converted one of its most sought-after classic models to run on electricity instead of gasoline. The roadster uses electric components sourced from the upcoming Rapide E sedan.
Smart Home

Is old-school Airstream finally embracing smart home technology?

Airstream's vintage-looking trailers have a huge audience but its 2019 Classic camping trailers are getting a modern upgrade with the addition of app-controlled smart home technology to bring modern convenience online.
Cars

Did that car just wink at you? Daimler previews car-to-pedestrian signals

Eager to show off progress with autonomous cars and perhaps do some consumer softening as well, Daimler and Bosch previewed car-to-pedestrian communications. A sensor-loaded Mercedes S appears to wink to acknowledge a pedestrian's presence.
Product Review

Audi built an electric SUV for buyers who want gasoline-free to mean stress-free

We finally got to spend time behind the wheel of the electric 2019 Audi E-Tron bustling cities and arid desert of the United Arab Emirates to see how it compares with Jaguar and Tesla's competitors.
Cars

Uber is about to restart self-driving car tests but on a reduced scale

Uber is reported to be on the verge of restarting its autonomous-car test program. The company halted it in March 2018 following a fatal accident involving one of its vehicles, but its cars could be back on the road within weeks.
Cars

Bosch is developing a Rosetta Stone for autonomous and connected cars

Bosch and start-up Veniam want to create a common language that autonomous and connected cars can use. The two firms have developed a connectivity unit that transcends the national boundaries of technology.
Cars

The Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake is the sexiest wagon ever

Aston Martin has revealed new photos of the limited-production Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake. The Vanquish Zagato line now includes the Shooting Brake, Coupe, Volante, and Speedster, each with bespoke styling.
Cars

Nissan and Italdesign’s GT-R50 concept will become a $1.1 million reality

The Nissan GT-R50 is a customized sports car built to celebrate the 50th anniversaries of both the GT-R and design firm Italdesign. Underneath the sleek bodywork sits a 710-horsepower engine fortified with race car components.
Cars

Ford’s new Shelby GT500 Mustang will have 3D-printed brake parts

Ford's new $45 million Advanced Manufacturing Center will focus on emerging technologies, including 3D printing. One of the staff's first jobs is to print parts for the 700-horsepower Shelby GT500 Mustang.
Mobile

Car-branded phones need to make a U-turn if they ever want to impress

Your car and your smartphone are becoming one, yet smartphones branded or co-created by car companies are a problem. We look at the history, some examples of the best and worst, then share hopes for the future.
News

World’s fastest electric race car to display at Petersen Museum

The Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak race car smashed the all-time record at the hill climb for which it was named. The all-electric VW record-holder will be on display at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles until February 1, 2019.