Volvo Cars, as a worldwide leader in safety, is sending a strong signal about the dangers of speeding and will limit the top speed on all its cars to 180 kph from 2020. The company’s vision, which aims for no one to be killed or seriously injured in a new Volvo by 2020, is one of the most ambitious yet practical safety visions in the automotive industry. But realizing that technology alone will not get the speed all the way to zero, Volvo Cars is now broadening its scope to focus on the driver’s behavior.
Research by Volvo Cars has identified three remaining concerns for safety that constitute so-called ‘gaps’ in its ambition to completely end serious injuries and fatalities in its cars, with speeding being a very prominent one. “Volvo is a leader in safety: we always have been and we always will be,” said Håkan Samuelsson, president, and chief executive. "Because of our research, we know where the problem areas are when it comes to ending serious injuries and fatalities in our cars. And while a speed limit is not a cure-all, it’s worth doing if we can even save one life.”
Apart from limiting top speeds, the car manufacturing company is also investigating how a combination of smart speed control and geofencing technology could automatically limit speeds around schools and hospitals in the future.
“We want to start a conversation about whether car-makers have the right or maybe even an obligation to install technology in cars that changes their driver´s behavior. We want to tackle things like speeding, intoxication or distraction,” said Mr. Samuelsson. “We don’t have a firm answer to this question, but believe we should take leadership in the discussion and be a good example.”
The problem with speeding is that above certain speeds, in-car safety technology, and smart infrastructure design are no longer enough to avoid severe injuries and fatalities in the event of an accident. That is why speed limits are in place in most western countries, yet speeding remains ubiquitous (let us find another word) and is one of the most common reasons for fatalities on the roads.
“Volvo Cars South Africa intends to support the brand’s international call to lobby other car manufacturers into a discussion around what can be done to end carnages on the roads. We want to establish whether car-makers have the right or maybe even an obligation to install technology in cars that change their driving behavior,” adds Greg Maruszewski, Managing Director of Volvo Cars South Africa.”
Volvo Cars will present ideas to tackle the problem areas of intoxication and distraction while driving at a special safety event in Sweden, which will be shared globally and strategically implemented by 2020.
Volvo Car Group in 2018
For the 2018 financial year, Volvo Car Group recorded an operating profit of 14,185 MSEK (14,061 MSEK in 2017). Revenue over the period amounted to 252,653 MSEK (208,646 MSEK). For the full year 2018, global sales reached a record 642,253 (571,577) cars, an increase of 12.4 percent versus 2017. The results underline the comprehensive transformation of Volvo Cars’ finances and operations in recent years, positioning the company for its next growth phase.
About Volvo Car Group
Volvo has been in operation since 1927. Today, Volvo Cars are one of the most well-known and respected car brands in the world with sales of 642,253 cars in 2018 in about 100 countries. Volvo Cars have been under the ownership of the Zhejiang Geely Holding (Geely Holding) of China since 2010. It formed part of the Swedish Volvo Group until 1999 when the company was bought by Ford Motor Company of the US. In 2010, Volvo Cars were acquired by Geely Holding. In 2018, Volvo Cars employed on average approximately 43,000 (39,500) full-time employees. Volvo Cars head office, product development, marketing, and administration functions are mainly located in Gothenburg, Sweden. Volvo Cars head office for China is located in Shanghai. The company’s main car production plants are located in Gothenburg (Sweden), Ghent (Belgium), South Carolina (US), Chengdu and Daqing (China), while engines are manufactured in Skövde (Sweden) and Zhangjiakou (China) and body components in Olofström (Sweden).
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