The truck is absolutely miraculous, and an exciting new corporate re-alignment will see most of the XC90’s style and PHEV tech filter down throughout the range. The new S90 limo kicks things off, followed by (we predict) a lightly facelifted XC60 mid-size crossover. Beyond that, we have new S60/S70 models on the mid-term horizon — with the first Charleston, SC-built sedans set for a summer 2017 arrival as 2018 model-years.
But if we were Volvo… what is the first possible thing to enhance the XC90’s existing style, tech and market share? An SUV Coupe, of course!
Mirroring the strategy started by BMW with the X5/X6, Mercedes is fully on-board with its slightly confusing GLE and GLE Coupes for 2016. These are both ML-based machines, but appealing to a vastly different buyer group.
The SAC (gag, yes, but BMW-speak for Sports Activity Vehicle) option for Volvo seems like a smart potential move. It will lure in performance-truck buyers from the Cayenne, while also firmly establishing the XC90/XC80 twins as serious, perhaps superior, rivals to the new Audi Q7 and 2018 Q6.
For these renderings, we tried to maintain as much production-feasibility for the chopped roofline in back. For example, the windshield and front doors stay the same across both models — as this is typically a priority to avoid re-engineering the crash structures, etc.
We’ve assumed that the third row of seats is now gone completely — and cut a deep new slant-roof look from two angles. And while the tops of the back doors are heavily altered, the actual door-frames and lower sections stay consistent among the two cars.
Out basis for both renders is the very-sexy 2016 XC90 R-Design, which we’ve also sportified down in the lower body. Deeper chin spoiler, sill extensions and and rear bodykit are a nice way to preview what this sportiest XC80 Polestar might look like, if it gets made. With some tweaks, the T8 twin-engine with 400HP from the 2016m XC90 could make close to 500HP in an XC80 Polestar! That would be an exciting GLE and X6 competitor, to be sure.
The logic for the XC80 is solid — it would be much larger and pricier than the eventual XC60 replacement or facelift, and could even have a long-wheelbase second row to be super stylish, but also have throne-like dual captains chairs in back.