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Volvo_EX90 crop 2.jpg Volvo Cars
'24 Volvo EX90 will define next stage of automaker’s technological growth in BEV era.

Volvo EX90 Exemplifies Safety and Elegance in BEV Era

The ‘24 Volvo EX90 combines the latest in technology and safety with eventual L3 autonomous driving.

Volvo Cars appears poised to make every customer who cherishes its long-time prowess in designing and building station wagons, but who are wary of converting to an electric vehicle, very happy with the new EX90.

From the brand-correct slightly boxy profile, to the premium wool-covered seats, the enormous 14.5-in. (37-cm) center screen and the elegant, simplified, harmonious interior, and a more than adequate 300-mile (483-km) range, Volvo appears to have hit the Swedish equivalent of a grand slam home run.

What strikes you when you start poking around the EX90 is the attention to detail everywhere. Sure, the CUV, which has displaced the station wagon, runs $80,000-$100,000, but considering this kid-and-grocery hauler is far, far above average, and the average transaction price of a new vehicle today is crowding around $50,000, the pricetag doesn’t seem so onerous.

“The Volvo EX90 is a statement for where we are, and where we are going,” Volvo Cars CEO Jim Rowan says. “It’s fully electric with a range of up to 300 miles on a single charge, (is) designed to further raise our safety standards, (and is) the first Volvo car to be truly defined by its software and part of a wider ecosystem, connecting to your home and your other devices. The Volvo EX90 is the start of something new for Volvo Cars in many ways.”

Here are some highlights of the EX90, which goes on sale at the end of the year, with pre-orders being taken now:

  • State-of-the art sensors including cameras, radars and lidar are connected to the car’s high-performance core computers, where NVIDIA Drive runs Volvo Cars’ in-house software to create a real-time, 360-degree view of the car’s surroundings.
  • Volvo’s lidar-based collision-avoidance system, delivered by Luminar, can sense the road in front of the vehicle, day or night, and at highway speeds. It can see small objects hundreds of meters ahead, creating more time to inform, act and avoid. The sensors also contribute to the Pilot Assist assisted- driving function, with a new steering support while changing lanes.
  • Level 3 autonomous driving will be available on the EX90 early in 2025 by means of an over-the-air software update.
  • Sensors and cameras gauge eye-gaze concentration. The technology allows the EX90 to understand when you’re distracted, drowsy or otherwise inattentive, beyond what has been possible in Volvos to date.
  • Erratic driving will elicit alerts to drowsy or tired drivers, but if the driver falls asleep or is incapacitated, the vehicle is designed to safely stop and call for help.
  • Snapdragon’s Cockpit Platforms with the visualization capabilities of Unreal Engine, the 3D tool developed by Epic Games, provides state-of-the-art computing power and high-quality graphics on the in-car screens and head-up display.
  • The Bowers & Wilkins audio system featuring Dolby Atmos is a Volvo first, plus headrest-integrated speakers for immersive sound. There are 25 speakers in all.
  • Expected to deliver up to 300 miles of driving range on a single charge, it charges from 10% to 80% in about 30 minutes on a fast charger.
  • The twin-motor all-wheel-drive version is powered by a 111-kWh battery and two permanent- magnet electric motors together delivering in its performance version 496 hp and 671 lb.-ft. (910 Nm) of torque. 
  • All the necessary hardware to enable bi-directional charging, which allows you to use your car battery as an extra energy supply – for example to power your home or other electric devices.
  • Third-row seats for 7-passenger capacity
  • Built in Charleston (Ridgeville) , SC.

The competition in the premium CUV segment has become fierce among automakers including BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Audi, Lincoln, Lexus, Acura, Genesis, Jaguar, Porsche and  Cadillac. But Volvo seems to have jumped its rivals a bit with a legitimate 300-mile 7-seater BEV.

A huge amount of software-delivered features and information in the EX90 is delivered primarily to the huge center screen. If it all works as intended, Volvo, a smaller volume player in the premium segment, could attract a lot of attention from car buyers currently holding key fobs of its rivals.

We haven’t driven the EX90 as yet, but from the walk-around review provided to us, the only complaint we could find to make is that the “frunk,” the front-of-the-car storage area  that at one time would have housed the engine, is a bit skimpy compared with other BEVs already on the market such as the Ford Mustang Mach-E.

But it turns out that was a trade-off for putting more safety structure in front of the driver. That’s Volvo for you.

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