MILAN — Interesting as the brand new Volvo EX30 is in commonplace guise, it’s the upcoming Cross Nation model that’s acquired my curiosity piqued. Volvo hasn’t launched a brand new Cross Nation mannequin for the reason that V60 was revealed in 2018, and the corporate has by no means utilized this remedy to one in every of its SUVs (although might we always remember the 2015 S60 Cross Nation sedan).
“I actually like the thought of getting the Cross Nation as a part of the model,” Volvo Automobiles CEO, Jim Rowan, stated in an interview Wednesday. Rowan declined to touch upon Volvo’s plans to develop the Cross Nation lineup additional, however did discuss why a automobile with an outdoorsy vibe completely is sensible as an EV.
“When you have got a completely electrical automobile … you open that tailgate, you stick a tent on the again of it [and] you employ the HVAC system to warmth or cool the automobile,” Rowan stated. “You’ll be able to run a small fridge off of it, you’ll be able to cost an electrical bike off of it. You are able to do a complete bunch of stuff that you possibly can by no means do since you’ve now acquired this large electrical energy supply that you simply by no means had.”
In fact, that is all dependent in your potential to cost your automobile at or close to your required distant getaway spot. EV chargers are nonetheless a rarity at many nationwide parks, although that is shortly altering.
On this wide-ranging interview, Rowan additionally touched on Volvo’s progress with putting in lidar techniques in its automobiles – one thing first seen on the bigger EX90 SUV however absent on the EX30.
“It is two completely different platforms,” Rowan identified. “At one cut-off date we puzzled whether or not we may get lidar really into the 90.” And when it got here to designing the EX30, “It was extra a case of ‘can we get this automobile out right now’ [and] it was on a special platform which by no means actually allowed us the choice.”
Later within the dialog, Rowan mentioned Volvo’s plans to supply over-the-air updates within the EX30. This provides Volvo the power to carry out plenty of future upgrades, nevertheless it additionally opens the door for pay-to-play characteristic subscription charges – one thing Rowan stated the corporate has no plans to pursue.
“Personally, I do not suppose it performs with the model,” Rowan stated. “We’re seen as a little bit of the trustworthy dealer. I believe we wish to keep that.”
Rowan stated EX30 prospects will see “a complete plethora” of various updates, however “some will simply be tidy-up” updates to make the automobile’s software program carry out higher.
“I do not subscribe that there is a large enterprise mannequin to maintain charging your buyer extra for software program updates except it is significant,” Rowan stated. “If you wish to have a fine-tuned efficiency engine and we will try this by means of software program, that is gonna be an improve. Heated seats? In all probability not.”
The EX30 is on the market to pre-order now, priced from proper round $36,000. The Cross Nation is anticipated to observe subsequent yr, with manufacturing estimated to start out in late 2024.