Making V90 special-order-only helps Volvo offer more variants in the U.S.
The Volvo V90 station wagon looks beautiful on the floor of the 2017 Detroit Auto Show, but if you live in the U.S., you won’t be seeing one at your local dealership. Volvo will not stock the V90 wagon and will require you to special-order it, though the V90 Cross Country will be available in the U.S.
The reasoning is simple and perhaps not unexpected: sales of traditional station wagons are so low in the U.S. that Volvo can’t justify sending a bunch of V90s to dealers. But the V90 Cross Country – the higher-riding, body-cladding-equipped version – will be stocked on dealer lots because it’s expected to be far more popular than the regular wagon.
“Historically, it’s been four, five, six to one,” Cross Country sales to those of the standard wagon, says Dean Shaw, Volvo Car USA vice president of communication. “We know that the customer base for [Volvo wagons] is very loyal, but it’s very low overall.”
Shaw said that Volvo wanted to be able to offer those loyal wagon customers as many options as possible. Sometimes, low-volume models must be restricted to only a few options in order for a carmaker to justify bringing it Stateside; the S60 Cross Country, for instance, is sold in one color, with one interior color choice, and with one engine. The Volvo V90, however, will be offered with all its various options and colors. Restricting its sales made that possible.
“We said, let’s just focus on letting enthusiasts get the car they want,” Shaw says.
Interested V90 customers can either take advantage of Volvo’s Overseas Delivery program or use the company’s Concierge program to order one directly from the factory. That also means that customers won’t be able to test-drive a V90; Shaw says that they should be able to get a good sense of the V90 by test-driving either the V90 Cross Country or the S90 sedan at one of Volvo’s 300 U.S. dealers.