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Drew Dowdell

Volvo News: Uber orders 24,000 Volvo XC90s

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Volvo an Uber announced a deal where Uber will purchase 24,000 Volvo XC90 Plug-In Hybrid SUVs over 3 years to expand Uber's self-driving fleet. Uber has been testing self-driving vehicles in Pittsburgh since Autumn 2016 with human supervision in the driver seat.  Over 100 such vehicles are currently in operation in the city.

The deal marks the largest single order of vehicles for Geely owned Volvo. While no financial details were disclosed, the minimum retail price for an XC90 T8 Hybrid is $64,950. Volvo expects the profit margin per vehicle to be on par with traditional sales through a dealership network.

Uber chose the XC90 because much of the hardware to add autonomous capabilities is already built into the car.  Geely/Volvo engineers have been working closely with Uber to ensure that compatibility going forward.

With a major shift in buying and driving habits coming in the future, Volvo is placing its chips on partnering with Uber to remain relevant in an industry ripe for disruption.

Photo: Uber


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      Volvo Cars to show nothing at Automobility LA
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      Auto shows tend to be the place that the majority of consumers get to poke around a number of new vehicles. So it seems a bit odd that Volvo will not have any vehicles for their LA Auto Show exhibit. What gives?
      “By calling the trade show Automobility LA, the organisers have recognised the disruption affecting our industry. We want to demonstrate that we got the memo and start a conversation about the future of automobility. So instead of bringing a concept car, we talk about the concept of a car. We will not win the ‘car of the show’ award this year, but we are comfortable with that. Because this is not a car show.” said Mårten Levenstam, responsible for product strategy at Volvo Cars in a statement.
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      “We’ll go at this change not with a smile, but we know what we need to do. We have a global manufacturing structure that helps us maneuver in these tough waters,” said Gustafsson.
      Back in July, Volvo announced that it would be sourcing XC60s destined for the U.S. from Europe. Previously, XC60s heading to the U.S. were coming from China. The move is expected to take place in January. Right now, Volvo is absorbing the 27.5 percent tariff on Chinese auto imports on the XC60. But Gustafsson said that is taking a big toll on their profits.
      “We are absorbing the tariffs, and that really is what you saw in our financial results. But we can, under no circumstances, absorb tariffs in the long run. It’s huge,” he said.
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