Forget the typical SUV competitors.
It was only a little over a decade or so ago when Volvo was still owned by Ford and, well, not much was happening. The Swedish automaker continued to build cars and SUVs, but aside from its long-standing tradition of developing safety features and related systems, many still considered Volvo rather dull. Not anymore.
Ford sold Volvo to Geely and the latter invested serious amounts of time and money. The results are what you see today as Volvo has become a fully-fledged player in the luxury market. It's also a technology leader, and electric vehicles play a huge role here. So it makes sense for its next-generation flagship SUV to push the boundaries yet again.
According to Autocar, the next Volvo XC90, due sometime in 2022, will offer a full electrification option alongside plug-in hybrid and mild-hybrid variants (diesel is dead).
Competing against such German-built flagship SUVs like the BMW X5, Audi Q7, and Mercedes-Benz GLE is no longer the only goal, but also the Tesla Model X, Audi e-tron, Mercedes EQC, and upcoming BMW iNext. Volvo CEO Hakan Samuelsson made the news official and, not surprisingly, sister brand Polestar's EV tech is being utilized. However, Polestar will remain the EV high-performance brand.
More importantly, the next XC90 will be the first model to be based on the company's updated SPA architecture. The next-generation Volvo S60 and Volvo S90 sedans (and respective wagon variants) will also ride on this platform, meaning full electrification is coming for both for their next redesigns.
Another important next-gen XC90 revelation is that it'll also be offered with Level 4 autonomous driving, allowing for hands-free and eyes-free driving, though drivers will still need to pay attention and take full control if necessary. Whether or not government regulations in some or all countries will allow drivers to utilize Level 4 autonomy is another matter entirely.