LONDON – Volvo’s entire range of vehicles will be fully electric by 2030, the Swedish-owned Chinese-owned company said Tuesday, joining a growing number of automakers who plan to phase out fossil fuel engines by the end of this decade .
“I am firmly convinced that there will be no customers who really want to stick with a gasoline engine,” Volvo boss Håkan Samuelsson told reporters when he was asked about future demand for electric vehicles. “We are convinced that an electric car is more attractive for customers.”
The Swedish automaker said that 50% of its global sales should be all-electric cars and the other semi-hybrid models by 2025.
Owned by Hangzhou-based Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, Volvo will launch a new family of electric cars over the next few years, all of which will only be sold online. Later on Tuesday, Volvo will unveil its second all-electric model, the C40.
According to Samuelsson, Volvo will provide wireless upgrades and fixes to its new electric models – an approach developed by electric car maker Tesla Inc.
Automakers are trying to switch to zero-emission models as they face CO2 emissions targets in Europe and China and some countries face bans on fossil fuel vehicles.
Last month, Ford announced that its range of products in Europe will be fully electric by 2030, while Tata Motors’ Jaguar Land Rover said its luxury brand Jaguar will be fully electric by 2025 and the automaker will be launching all of its range of electric models by 2030 will bring.
And last November, luxury automaker Bentley, owned by German Volkswagen, said its models would all be electric by 2030.
Electrification is expensive for automakers, and as electric vehicles have fewer moving parts, auto employment is expected to shrink.
Samuelsson, CEO of Volvo, said electrification will primarily affect engine plants and auto suppliers across the industry, offering everything from oil filters to fuel injectors to spark plugs.
“That’s a lot of jobs, of course,” he said. “But overall, I don’t think there will be much of a difference.”
Volvo said it will “radically reduce” the complexity of its model range and offer customers transparent pricing.
The global network of the car manufacturer with 2,400 traditional stationary dealers remains open for service vehicles and for customers with online orders.
So far, Volvo has not been affected by a global pandemic-induced semiconductor chip shortage that has closed a growing number of assembly plants thanks to constant communication with suppliers, according to Samuelsson.
“Until now, knock on wood, we didn’t have to stop an assembly line,” he said. “But it could hap any day.”