You've read about this over and over again: the coronavirus pandemic had a negative effect on automotive sales in 2020 because of obvious reasons. But not Volvo – the Swedish company is one of the few automakers that posted positive sales in the US.
In an interview with Automotive News, Ernie Norcross, Volvo Retail Advisory Board Chairman, said that last year was a strong profit and volume year. Volvo was able to bounce back from the sales slump by June 2020 and ended the year with a 1.8 percent sales increase compared to 2019.
Gallery: Volvo XC40 Electric
Norcross attributed the company's success to the autonomy that Volvo Cars USA gave them in the early parts of the pandemic. This allowed them to react quickly to local market conditions. Apart from that, Norcross added that Volvo was one-step ahead in terms of digital retailing – an important aspect in the automotive business amid the impairment in mobility last year.
But beyond recalling what they did right last year, Norcross also shared an insight about Volvo's current offering. When asked what's missing in Volvo's lineup, he said that they would like to see a larger SUV to slot above the XC90. The new larger SUV would allow the car brand to compete against the Mercedes GLS and BMW X7. Norcross sees this as a great profit opportunity for dealers.
Norcross's answer was more of a wish than a hint, though. There aren't any recent reports about the arrival of a larger Volvo SUV, so we believe it will be a long way down the road before this materializes. There were reports of an electric XC100 coming, but Volvo hasn't followed up on that and it won't likely arrive until the second half of 2023.
For the time being, Volvo announced that a new EV will arrive on March 2, 2021, which will be a coupe-like crossover. When asked about this model, Norcross said that it's a good-looking entry-level vehicle and "it's going to be able to marry people into the brand."