Volvo’s XC90, which will be launched in just a few weeks time in Stockholm, will be the first car in its range to be built using SPA (Scalable Product Architecture). It is a modular chassis technology, developed in house over the past 4 years. SPA is the cornerstone of the company’s $11 billion USD transformation. It will assist Volvo by providing two things.
First, the flexibility of Volvo’s SPA program is that it relieves engineers and developers to explore and introduce additional features, while providing enhanced drivability, safety features, enhanced connected technologies and creating more interior space.
Second, is SPA will change how Volvo builds cars in the future. Since SPA allows a wide range of cars, powertrains, electrical systems and technologies (all of different levels of complexity) to be interconnected, it will reduce overall costs to create different vehicles. In addition, the SPA technology reduces chassis weight and effective weight distribution, therefore creating a more positive, comfortable driving experience.
Volvo’s SPA system allows for previous restrictions to be reduced or eliminated. Areas like height of vehicle, wheelbase, overhang and such have been removed using SPA.
In addition, one feature of the XC90 has been revealed up to now. And that is the front fascia of the vehicle. It’s provided quite a teaser, as the running lights (DRL’s here in the US) are in the shape of a T. The designers have dubbed them “Thor’s Hammer” after the famous Norse god of thunder, Thor.