Like nearly everybody else in the industry, Volvo is looking to expand. Thanks to currency exchange rates and more competitive wages than before, manufacturing in North America is looking increasingly attractive. At least in the car industry, manufacturing is alive and well. Audi is looking to add a plant here in NA, and Volvo could be looking to do so as well. This news comes straight from the top, via Chief Executive Officer Stefan Jacoby.
Automotive News spoke with Jacoby at the Geneva Motor Show. He said Volvo is considering a plant either in the United States or Mexico, and will make a decision within the next three years .The reason being is that Volvo is currently too dependent on the Euro. Especially given the volatility in European markets, the company needs a hedge.
Along with a goal of reducing fatalities, Volvo wants to boost its global sales to 800,000 vehicles by 2010. That is just under double the 449,255 tally that Volvo posted last year. This year the company is counting on the launch of its V40 compact to help continue its growth. Unfortunately, we won’t play a part in that as the V40 isn’t destined for our shores. Volvo’s immediate goal is establishing a foothold in the Chinese market, which you would think wouldn’t be a problem given ownership by Geely.
Weirdly enough though, China’s rules necessitate Volvo being treated like a foreign manufacturer. We aren’t sure why that is the case, but in order to manufacturer in China Volvo needs to find a partner and introduce a local Chinese brand. We imagine the Chinese market will power a good portion of Volvo’s growth in this decade. The goal in the U.S is to hit 120,000 units by 2020. In the near term, Volvo will need to upgrade its aging XC90 crossover and broaden its lineup in order to keep sales from slipping.