Future Volvo's Go Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid Only by 2019 – For a Price

Discussion in 'In the News' started by xcel, Jul 5, 2017.

  1. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    [​IMG] A short term risk to long term sustainable mobility incurs a steep cost of entry.

    Wayne Gerdes – CleanMPG – July 5, 2017


    Just two days ago Volvo announced its June U.S. sales totals with 7,303 vehicles sold, down a rather steep 15.0 percent from the 8,588 sold in June of 2016. YTD sales are only marginally better with sales of 34,105 vehicles, down 7.0 percent below the 36,654 sold through the same period of 2016.

    In an early morning release, the luxury car brand announced its intention that every new model it launches from 2019 forward will be electrified.

    More specifically, “Every Volvo it launches from 2019 will have an electric motor, marking the historic end of cars that only have an internal combustion engine (ICE) and placing electrification at the core of its future business.”

    While the electrification is noteworthy, it is more of a 48V mild-hybrid/plug-in hybrid announcement. Between 2019 and 2021, Volvo did say they will launch 5 pure electric models. Three of which will be Volvo models and two of which will be high performance electrified cars from Polestar, Volvo Cars' performance car arm.

    These five cars will be supplemented by a range of gasoline drivetrains here in the U.S. and both gasoline and diesel PHEVs and 48V mild hybrid options on all models.

    Meaning internal combustion engine only designs will slowly be phased out and replaced by the electrified options.

    From the same release, Volvo stated they will reach climate neutral manufacturing operations by 2025.

    While Volvo states that consumer demand for electrified cars is rising and they want to be at the forefront, their PHEV is a $100k+ unit. Maybe they will find the core group to pay the high costs of Volvo ownership in the future. My bet is their push will be backed down a bit to match market realty’s. Meaning there will be more PHEVs in the mix then pure BEVs. At least here in the states for the foreseeable future.

    The base "Momentum" trim starts at $45,750.

    2017 7-passenger Volvo XC90 “Inscription” trim includes ventilated soft perforated Nappa Leather and Linear Walnut Wood Inlays, 20" Alloys, Inscription Grille, a 12.3” Digital Instrument Display and starts at $57,350.

    The 2017 7-passenger Volvo XC90 T8 “Excellence” trim is a PHEV w/ a Bowers & Wilkins Premium Sound System, Beverage Cooler/Refrigerator, Front and Rear Seats w/High-spec Ventilation and Massage Function seating with a starting price beginning at a jaw dropping $104,900.


    US. Spec XC90 Drivetrain Details

    The T5 uses a direct injected and turbo charged 250 hp and 258 lb-ft. of torque 2.0L I4 w/ a 0 to 60 time of 7.9 sec. for the AWD variant.

    The AWD only T6 uses direct injected, turbo charged, and supercharged 316 hp and 295 lb.-ft. of torque 2.0L I4 (T6) w/ a 0 to 60 time of 6.6 sec.

    The AWD only T8 uses the direct injected, turbo charged, and supercharged 313 hp and 295 lb.-ft. of torque 2.0L I4 (T8) combined with a 14-mile range PHEV configuration including an 87 hp electric motor for a combined output of 400 hp and 470 lb-ft. of torque w/ a 0 to 60 time of 5.3 sec.

    The lowest cost PHEV can be picked up in the R-Design trim w/ the T8 drivetrain ($67,800) vs. T5 ($51,500) or T6 ($56,250) in the same trim. 14-miles of AER for $16.3k or $11.5k depending on drivetrain? That is a ridiculous upcharge!

    A whopping 14-miles of all-electric range in this day and age? Did someone transport us back to 2011? The XC-90 with the ultra-expensive T8 drivetrain delivers an EPA-rated 53 MPGe. That is just a lousy efficiency result.

    Anyone see a problem with Volvo’s idea of electrification on both the efficiency and pricing front? The U.S. $7,500 Tax Credit and small state incentives are not going to save them in this regard.
    ALS and BillLin like this.
  2. ALS

    ALS Super Moderator Staff Member

    I'm up in the air on Volvo's disission to go all Hybid and BEV. I really don't think we're there yet, where the public will accept a manufacturer that goes all in, in such a short period of time. I made the comment a few weeks ago about the S90 SUV hybrid on my local Volvo dealers showroom that was stickered over $106k.
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2017
    xcel likes this.
  3. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Al:

    I could understand a company like Toyota making the move "if" gasoline prices were up in the $4 to $5 range. They are playing the long game however. Offer both and if one does not sell, they have their much less expensive lineup to keep $s coming in. With Volvo, the price is double for just 14-mile range PHEV. If the Prime costs $50k vs. the Prius Two at $26k, they would sell 0.

    On the HEV front, the 48V systems are mild as hell. They are not worth the cost of entry!

  4. Trollbait

    Trollbait Well-Known Member

    This move is for Volvo's main market in Europe, where diesels have fallen out of favor, and for their growing market in China.

    GM can price their eAssist on a pick up for $500. Basic start/stop systems were priced that not too long ago. A Renault is one of the first cars with the 48volt hybrid option; they charge $1000 if IRRC. The push is to get these systems low enough cost to be standard on all cars, and they are better than no hybrid.
    BillLin and xcel like this.
  5. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Trollbait:

    I am adding a counterpoint about the Stop/Start systems. The large AGM battery replacement vs. std. battery alone overwhelms the small fuel savings. The 48V systems add even more complexity as they need an Inverter and 48V storage. If you want a 48V system w/ Assist, add the cost of a 15 to 20 hp electric motor and HD clutch to the mix. You may as well consider a full 300+ or 600+ boosted hybrid system as the the larger inverter, motor, and pack add only a small incremental cost to the pkg. allowing the 30+ percent gain vs. maybe 5 percent from Start/Stop.

    BillLin likes this.
  6. Trollbait

    Trollbait Well-Known Member

    If I can't have Mazda's start/stop, I'd prefer something like GM's in which a second, deep discharge 12v battery is added, but opting for the system won't help my personal fuel economy much.

    Fuel economy and emission regulations are becoming more stringent. Then engine accessories, like power steering, are getting off the serpentine belt, and moving to electric driven. Plus, there are now more electronics on a car for safety features and entertainment. These are the factors driving the auto manufacturers to adopt these 48v mild hybrids. They will likely become standard equipment in time for these reasons. Volvo is just the first.

    Toyota did not lower the $3800 hybrid premium on the new Camry. Being $2800 more than one of these 48v system is not a small incremental cost to the end user. Most Americans are unwilling to shell out the extra cash for a full hybrid, but they might pay the lower amount for a mild one. The lower cost does mean the manufacturer can afford to put them on more cars. Which could lead to larger improvements to the fleet's economy and emissions than sticking with traditional ICE cars with a few hybrids.
    xcel likes this.
  7. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    HI Trollbait:

    17 Volvo XC90 PHEV: $105k
    17 Volvo XC90: $45k

    That is not going to sell well.

    ALS and kbergene like this.
  8. Trollbait

    Trollbait Well-Known Member

    It also isn't the mild hybrid.
    The PHEV starts at $68k, and it is easy to push the ICE price over $70k. These are high end luxury vehicles. Volvo could probably add the 48v system without raising the price, if they desired. As the most powerful drive train, selling the PHEV may not be an issue, and the people buying it likely don't care that Volvo's website doesn't mention EV range.
  9. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Trollbait:

    It does not matter if it is a full hybrid or not. They do not supply anything near the level of of efficiency of a full hybrid.

    The 17 Prius Prime PHEV can be picked up for just over $18k today after the giveaways. The XC90 PHEV costs over $100k for the PHEV even after the giveaways vs. the base < $50k XC90.

    Mild Hybrids have failed to a vehicle in the U.S. because they cost almost as much as a full hybrid without nearly the efficiency gains.

    kbergene likes this.
  10. Carcus

    Carcus Well-Known Member

    A "might be real, might be greenwashing" reaction to Tesla?

    might be real -- IF you have 10 -15 year batteries that cost less than $150/kwh in a $5.00+/gallon market, EV's and strong PHEV's are certainly going to bite into pure ICE market share.
    might be greenwashing -- the "48v mild hybrid option on all models" -- sounds like greenwashing to me.

    /all of the 'upper end' manufacturers (bmw, audi, volvo, mercedes) gotta be nervous about the model 3 launch
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2017
    xcel likes this.
  11. Trollbait

    Trollbait Well-Known Member

    The XC90 PHEV starts at under $68k on Volvo's site, not over $100k. The PHEV is a drive train option for lower trims through the build your own site. It is still a costly upgrade, but it is likely inline to what other high end luxury makes are charging for their power plug ins. Those shopping in the high end segment aren't likely to look at a Toyota.

    Earlier mild hybrids failed due to costs, but the costs have come down. Just like they have for full hybrids. Full hybrids will always have the overhead of safety shielding for the high voltages that increase their cost beyond that of the upgrading of their components, that leave them at a cost disadvantage to mild systems.

    I do not expect great gains from mild hybrids, but most Americans aren't buying full hybrids. The vast majority don't even try to drive efficiently. Between the lowering cost and stricter emission and fuel economy regulations, the car manufacturers are going to start making mild hybrids standard. In regards to the main population, that is far better than a plain old ICE car.
  12. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Trollbait:

    The Volvo rep got a hold of me two days ago with regards to the PHEV starting price in R-Design trim w/ the T8 drivetrain ($67,800) vs. T5 ($51,500) or T6 ($56,250). 14-miles of AER for $16.3k or $11,550 depending on trim? That is a ridiculous upcharge as you can almost purchase a new Prius Prime Plus with 25-mile s of AER for just the drivetrain upcharge Volvo is asking. WTF is that???

    BillLin likes this.
  13. Trollbait

    Trollbait Well-Known Member

    BMW has an upcharge of $11k for the 3 series plug in, which I believe is still classified as a compact car under the EPA. Mercedes might be the most reasonable with $6 on C-class PHEV. I'm not defending it, but this isn't just a Volvo thing. The closest I personally will come to owning a brand from that segment will be a used, high mileage XC70. I wouldn't look at any new one, but then I'm not their target customer. Those customers might not even look at any of the 'lesser' brands.
    xcel and BillLin like this.
  14. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Trollbait:

    The BMW 3-Series PHEV is the biggest POS on the road. In CS hybrid mode, the damn thing could not even break 40 mpg!

    With many modern PHEVs coming in around $20k or less after the deals, $40 to $100k anything makes little sense to me. Of course $100k Tesla's make no-sense to me either but they sell in pretty decent quantity every month.

  15. ALS

    ALS Super Moderator Staff Member


    Like I said a few weeks ago the XC90 Hybrid on my Volvo dealers showroom floor had a sticker price of $105,6XX

    You should have seen how small the letters were of the window sticker when it came to the price.

    I had to ask the service writer what the price was. He said look at the top right hand corner it's in really small print.

    xcel likes this.
  16. Trollbait

    Trollbait Well-Known Member

    Not doubting the loaded to the gills XC90 PHEV price. Just pointing out that it shouldn't be compared to the $45k entry level ICE trim. It is same thing as comparing a Prius to a base Corolla or Yaris.

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