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.

SPA and the XC90 are firm evidence of our Volvo-by-Volvo strategy. The XC90’s outstanding combination of luxury, space, versatility, efficiency and safety will bring the SUV segment into a new dimension, just as the original XC90 did in 2002.Dr Peter Mertens, Senior Vice President, Research and Development of Volvo Car Group

Volvo XC90 Featured

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.

SPA gives us a fresh technological start. Around 90 per cent of the components in the all-new XC90 and upcoming models are new and unique. We are raising the bar to the very top of the premium league when it comes to quality and technology level in every vital area.Dr Peter Mertens, Senior Vice President, Research and Development of Volvo Car Group

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.

This has created greater freedom for us to design cars with a confident stance, dynamic proportions and a number of distinctive design signatures. Our three recent concept cars have demonstrated this capability. Even though the all-new XC90 is an entirely different type of car, you will recognise the connection instantly when it is revealed in two weeks.Thomas Ingenlath, Senior Vice President Design of Volvo Car Group

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.

Website: 2015 Volvo XC90

About the author

Jeff Trocchio

Apple IIe green screen is whence I came. Where I go, only technology knows. If its Automotive, Mobile, Gaming or Computer tech I'll try my best to give my thoughts on it.