VOLVO IS FIRST AUTOMOTIVE BRAND TO USE GOOGLE CARDBOARD
Volvo’s XC90 Experience Is World’s First Full Virtual Reality Test Drive on a Smartphone – at the Los Angeles Auto Show & on Smartphones Everywhere
Rockleigh, N.J. – November 13, 2014 – Volvo Cars is the first automotive brand to use Google Cardboard to transform the way businesses enable audiences to experience a product: through the lens of virtual reality via Google Cardboard. Starting at the Los Angeles Auto Show, Volvo is inviting auto and innovation enthusiasts to experience a revolutionary way to test drive the all-new XC90, months before it arrives in the US.
After downloading the Volvo Reality app and inserting their phone in the Google Cardboard, viewers will be transported into an XC90 where they can explore and immerse themselves in the sights and sounds of the car on the open road.
“Using Google Cardboard exemplifies the marriage of innovation and design engineering. With nothing more than a smartphone, cardboard, two lenses and a magnet, customers can experience a test drive that puts them in the driver’s seat of the XC90,” said Bodil Eriksson, EVP, Product, Brand, Marketing & Communications, Volvo Cars North America. “With Google Cardboard we can deliver an experience that is so much richer than simple videos or pictures. We can now transport people into a 360-degree world where they can explore and experience the next-generation luxury SUV, months before it’s in dealerships.”
Themed around a weekend escape, the Volvo Reality experience with Google Cardboard lets users immerse themselves in a stunning natural landscape, the interior of the car, and the road itself. The first in a trilogy, “Friday Getaway” begins in an open field, takes you far up into the mountains, and culminates in a stunning look at a star-filled sky. Future episodes will continue the journey. The experience also includes a custom soundtrack to complement the test drive.
"With Cardboard, we want to inspire and encourage the creation of immersive digital experiences," said Andrew Nartker, Product Manager for Google Cardboard. "We're excited to see Volvo build and share their own unique experience at the LA Auto Show using Cardboard."
Volvo teamed up with two award-winning companies to bring this first-of-its-kind experience to the virtual reality road. R/GA created the concept with Volvo and led the design, technical development and implementation of Volvo Reality. Framestore used its virtual reality expertise to film and create an unparalleled test drive in multiple dimensions. Their approach for their first-ever Google Cardboard project included a combination of photoreal CGI and a proprietary, 360-degree VR camera technique.
Initially the experience will be available on Android, with iOS following shortly after. For more information or to request a Google Cardboard kit, please visit www.volvocars.com/us/volvoreality. Fans can follow @VolvoCarsUS on Twitter for more news and share their experiences with the hashtag #VolvoReality. They can also build their own Cardboard using these schematics at g.co/cardboard.
Volvo’s XC90 will be in the South Hall Lobby of the Los Angeles Convention Center from November 18 to 30, 2014.
Volvo Cars at the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show
Volvo Car Group reveals US Revival Plan
- Complete renewal of entire model range in five years
- Targets sales of over 100,000 in the medium term
- Volvo CEO: “We will not only stay in the US, we will prosper”
Volvo Cars today revealed full details of its plan to revive sales in the US, which will be led by a complete renewal of its entire product range in the next five years, a renewed focus on its dealer network, world first engine and safety technologies, a new management team and increased marketing spending.
The announcement of the plan comes at the LA Auto Show, where Volvo will introduce the all-new XC90 seven seater SUV to the US and also reveal the new V60 Cross Country wagon.
The Swedish company is confident that it can reverse a 10-year trend of falling sales in the US to sell around 100,000 cars a year in the medium term, compared to around 60,000 forecast sales this year. This will bring the company's performance in the US into line with the strong sales growth it has generated in Western Europe and China.
“Volvo is in the US to stay. Not only will we stay, we will prosper,” said Håkan Samuelsson, President and Chief Executive of Volvo Cars. “We have a plan and we are implementing it. We sold over 100,000 cars a year in the US in the past. Our initial aim is to get back to that level and in the longer term surpass it.”
Volvo's US Revival Plan has five elements. They are:
- The complete renewal of the product range in the next five years which begins with the all-new XC90 and V60 Cross Country
- A full scale strengthening of the brand with a marketing budget set to double in the next year
- A focus on developing the dealer network to ensure the infrastructure is in place to support brand development and new products
- A focus on managing residual values to ensure that the company’s premium position is reflected in the long term value of its products
- A drive to improve service operations and deliver real profit opportunities to the dealer network as well as an uncompromising approach to service quality
This revival plan will be implemented by a new management team, which is already in place. It will also be underpinned by several new technologies. These include Drive-E, the most powerful and environmentally friendly engines on the market, world beating safety technologies and the latest connectivity capabilities.
The all new XC90 in LA
The US public is being offered its first look at the all new XC90 at the LA Auto Show.
The XC90 is a visually striking, premium quality seven seat SUV with world leading safety features, new powertrain technologies, an unrivalled combination of power and fuel efficiency and a superlative interior finish.
The new XC90 marks the beginning of a new chapter in Volvo’s history, capturing its future design direction, incorporating its own range of new technologies and utilising its new Scalable Product Architecture (SPA) technology.
The First Edition of the all-new Volvo XC90, 1,927 individually numbered cars only available for sale via digital commerce, sold out in 47 hours after it was released in early September 2014.
World premiere in Los Angeles: the Volvo V60 Cross Country
In Los Angeles, Volvo Cars also showcases the long-awaited Cross Country version of its successful V60 sports wagon.
Compared to the regular V60, the V60 Cross Country has an increased ground clearance of 65 mm. Furthermore, offering new Cross Country 18” and 19” wheels, the V60 Cross Country comes with high profile tyres, adding comfort and off-road aesthetics, reducing road noise and providing added wheel protection whether climbing kerbs or negotiating rocky roads.
The US and Canada will get the first V60 Cross Country cars, and they will launch with Volvo’s iconic five cylinder 250 hp petrol engine with All-Wheel Drive coupled to an automatic transmission delivering a highly competitive 23 mpg.
Volvo’s new class-leading Drive-E four-cylinder petrol engines, which will be available in the V60 Cross Country globally in early 2015, will be the base for the Front-Wheel Drive variant, while the proven five-cylinder D4 powertrain will provide the power for the All-Wheel Drive variant.
The Cross Country brand has a long and distinguished heritage. Volvo Cars was the first premium brand to offer increased all-road capability and styling on its wagons as far back as 1997 when it introduced the V70 Cross Country, creating a whole new type of car experience that has since captured the imagination of the motoring public.
Volvo Takes Top Honors in IntelliChoice's 2015 Certified Pre-Owned Car Awards for the Eighth Straight Year
ROCKLEIGH, N.J. (Nov. 12, 2014) - Volvo Cars of North America (VCNA) once again took top honors from IntelliChoice, the leading provider of automotive cost and value analysis, at the 16th annual IntelliChoice Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) Car Awards. Volvo won the Best Premium Program award for the eight straight year.
"The best of these programs have continued to deliver substantial peace of mind, particularly through their extended CPO Warranties, said Eric Anderson, Ownership Database Supervisor at IntelliChoice. “The Volvo program features a no-deductible 7-year/100,000-mile comprehensive plan, which is the primary reason Volvo retains the top spot in our analysis among Premium programs."
IntelliChoice highlighted Volvo's success noting the brand has achieved a 100% Inspection Score since 2008, which speaks to the thoroughness of its inspection process. Volvo has sold over 10,000 certified pre-owned vehicles in the first three quarters of 2014, which represents a 34% increase over the same time period in 2013. All of Volvo’s dealerships participate in the program. The program adds a number of other benefits including VIN-specific window stickers summarize original equipment and display the warranty expiration date.
For more information on Volvo's award-winning CPO program, please visit: http://www.volvocars.com/us/sales-services/sales/volvo_certified_preowned/pages/default.aspx