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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay, where the heck is Volvo going? While I miss the brick shapes, the new cars seem pretty cool. I just wonder where they fit in with Ford.<P>Jaguar will have an S60 competitor with their new X-type, so is Volvo coming down market.<P>I thought I read in CAR that they were considering a Golf competitor. That's pretty ambitious, and I just wonder if it takes away a bit fromt the sort of status that Volvo now has? Then again, they could be going back to the roots of the smaller cheaper cars of the past. I really dig my 240, but I'm still not to sure about the V40.<P>
 

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Personally, I'm worried about too much competition withing the Ford Group. Cars like the S60/S80, Jag X series, & the Lincoln LS all seem to be going after the same market. I just hope we don't see some sort of Oldsmobile style elimination a few years down the line.<P>
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yeah, that's always a scare isn't it. I guess the question is where Volvo fits into it all. Right now, none of the Volvos are using a Ford platform, but the way Car talks, you'd think they could all be Mondeo based someday.
 

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Bottom line is, Ford wants to double Volvo unit sales AS WELL AS slot the nameplate in between Lincoln-Mercury and Jag on the prestige continuum. <P>This is a real hard trick and I don't see how you do it without platform-sharing and hitting the SUV or minivan market hard, at least in North America. And that really alters the historic Volvo brand profile. It is known that when Ford was negotiating to buy the Volvo Cars nameplate, but not the Volvo Trucks nameplate, they definitely wanted to leverage the Volvo brand in the SUV space... so they had to draw a line in the sand somewhere between "car" and "truck." How big a Volvo vehicle could Volvo Cars market before Volvo Trucks took it personally? I believe the deal struck was, FoMoCo has the right to build a Volvo SUV that is slightly bigger than the current Ford Excursion -- which as you know looks like the steel box holding a three-pack of Tauruses. So if that's their plan for Volvo volume (and you KNOW the platform for such a vehicle isn't coming from Gothenburg) that's really worrisome.<P>Yes, Ford has done a wonderful job maintaining the integrity of the Jag brand, but Jag isn't a volume proposition. And with Lincoln-Mercury on a constant endless quest for identity, and the LS (as someone above pointed out) knocking heads with the S60/80, there's probably a cogent argument for letting L-M fade away a la Oldsmobile... and putting more pressure on Volvo to do yet MORE units in the near-lux segment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
You know, with Plymouth and Olds being put out to pasture, I guess an argument could be made to retire Merc, but I don't think Lincoln is going anywhere. From the looks of their platform strategy, the Lincoln brand could become their bigger and more affordable rear wheel drive line, with the entry level LS8 replacing the Continental or being sold alongside much like the Lexus IS and ES in the same market, but with fwd and rwd.<P>Merc on the other hand is a conundrum. I think I'd keep it if I were their brand marketing guys, just spruce it up a little. They still sand Grand Marquis very well to retired folk, but that doesn't do much for the brand name.<P>However, just using Ford platforms, I'd take Merc and sell the Focus (same name, different badge, like the Neon), Mondeo sedan and wagon, Cougar, and Grand Marqi. I'd do sport versions of all of them (XR4 on the Focus, XR6 on the Mondeo (for all of those ex SVT owners), and a Marauder version of the GM. <P>Gosh, I hope they don't make a Volvo excursion. that'd suck.
 
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