Volvo Cars’ instrumental role in defining the adventurous Cross Country segment is widely acknowledged across the globe. With the imminent reveal of the new Volvo V90 Cross Country, the Swedish carmaker is set to cement its leading role with the most capable and comfortable premium all-roader on offer and complete its 90 Series line-up.
“Cross Country has become the true expression of a Volvo car in many peoples’ eyes. It was a winning concept from the start, perfect for the tough climate and road conditions that we experience in Sweden,” says Håkan Samuelsson, President & CEO, Volvo Car Group.
Developed in 1996, Volvo’s first Cross Country estate combined functional flexibility and rugged capability. Today, 20 years later, the Cross Country segment is a familiar sight across the premium car market, providing a capable yet comfortable driving experience.
Extreme climate capability
Designed to cope with the demanding requirements of an extreme Scandinavian climate, Cross Country models perform in all sorts of road conditions – from muddy tracks and knee-deep snow to long distance highway driving. Proving a popular choice with horse and boat owners thanks to its high ground clearance, pulling power and responsive all-wheel drive, the Cross Country has cemented its position as a premium mainstay and a true all-weather alternative to the SUV.
“We were very careful from the very beginning to ensure that the Cross Country concept was not just an exercise in rugged styling. We placed high demands on real-world capability, and as we developed the segment we added the comfort and convenience elements that Volvo drivers have come to expect,” says Dr Peter Mertens, Senior Vice President Research & Development at Volvo Car Group.
The eagerly-awaited V90 Cross Country will be revealed in mid-September, and is under consideration for South African introduction in 2017.
First generation: 1997 – 2000
Developed as a capable alternative to the SUV and other front-wheel drive cars, Volvo Cars’ first Cross Country, the V70 XC, grew in popularity as old-school SUVs began to morph into city dwellers. The Cross Country offered a new, adventurous take on motoring that delivered a competent mix of capability, functionality and comfort. The V70 XC was an instant success, especially in the North American market.
Second generation: 2000– 2007
In 2000, the second generation V70 XC came with much bolder styling and higher ground clearance. When Volvo’s first SUV, the XC90, arrived in 2002, the V70 XC received a newer, more modern all-wheel drive system and changed its name to XC70 in order to better align with its bigger brother.
Third generation: 2007 – 2016
The third generation Volvo Cross Country arrived in 2007 with added elegance and luxury. The XC70 continued its North American love affair, accounting for almost half of the total volume produced.
In 2014, the XC70 gained recognition around the globe as Zlatan Ibrahimović´s car thanks to a Volvo Cars commercial featuring the Swedish footballer. Such was the impact that sales of the model grew markedly during its last years of production.