New renderings shared at the Worldscoop forums claim to show the next Volvo XC90. They appear to be patent images, though we were unable to confirm a specific source. However, the plot thickens a bit as we did find a recent trademark filing from Volvo for the name EXC90. Is it merely a coincidence that images and a name appeared at the same time?
We know Volvo is going all-electric. An EV successor to the XC90 has already been confirmed, and Volvo CEO Hakan Samuelsson confirmed last year that its name will begin with a vowel. At the time, we speculated that it could be called Embla, as that was a trademark Volvo was protecting. Obviously, simply adding an E to the familiar XC90 moniker also meets the criteria, so it all seems pretty straightforward. This could well be the all-electric Volvo EXC90 before you're supposed to see it. Maybe.
Gallery: Next-Gen Volvo EXC90 Patent Images
We say that because this could also be a facelifted XC90 using its current hybrid powertrain. In February 2022, Samuelsson stated that the XC90 would remain in production and be sold alongside the next-gen EV, at least for a little while. Furthermore, the CEO said the XC90 would receive updated styling. The renderings here are certainly identifiable as an XC90, especially in profile.
However, we suspect this is indeed the electric model. At the front we see thin headlights with vertically oriented corner vents on the fascia, flanking a solid grille. A lack of grille detail could simply be due to the basic nature of the renderings, but things are more convincing at the rear. The new taillight design is quite similar to the company's Recharge concept, a vehicle that "represents a manifesto for the all-electric future of Volvo Cars" per the automaker. There's also no indication of exhaust outlets anywhere in the lower rear fascia.
With these alleged patent images and a confirmed EXC90 trademark, could an official debut be around the corner? Last year, Volvo said the XC90's electric successor was coming in 2022. Supply chain issues have caused delays with nearly every automaker on the planet, but there's still nearly half a year for Volvo to meet a 2022 deadline.
Curious about more cars for 2022? Check out the Rambling About Cars podcast, available below.