Volvo has vowed to wean itself off diesel and, this summer, it will stick to its word – by launching the final new diesel engine it will ever make.
Details of the new engine have not yet been confirmed, but it’s expected to help Volvo meet ever-stricter new real-world emissions regulations.
“We don’t see a future for diesel,” said Volvo senior vice president for global operations, Lex Kerssemakers during a London briefing. “We are already reallocating resources [that would have been spent on diesel development] into full EVs.
“The engine we will launch in mid-2019 will be the last one we will develop.”
Kerssemakers admits that diesel still has a role to play today, which is why Volvo has future-proved itself against regulations for the next few years. But the switch to electric is going to come quickly, he insisted.
“By 2025, 50 percent of new cars we sell will be a full EV.”
Here, Kerssemakers was clear: that 2025 target does not include plug-in hybrids. “PHEVs are clearly an in-between step,” he said. Switching rapidly to full electric will be the only way for car manufacturers to meet strict future emissions targets.
Helping drive mainstream adaptation is Volvo’s policy to electrify ‘regular’ cars, rather than sell a standalone range of electric vehicles.
The first all-electric Volvo Group vehicle will be the Polestar 02, which will launch in 2019, quickly followed by an all-electric XC40.
“Then, every new car or refresh will include a full EV version.” And diesel? In its final throes of powering Volvo road cars.