Volvo sales will be 10 per cent electric cars in 2022

Volvo is pushing hard to boost the proportion of fully electric cars it sells, with a target that one in 10 vehicles it shifts this year will be battery powered

Volvo C40 Recharge - front

Volvo expects one in 10 of the cars it sells in 2022 to be pure electric, almost doubling the percentage share of zero-emissions vehicles it sold in the final quarter of last year.

The Swedish brand’s round-up of financial results revealed that amid a record year for revenue, 34 per cent of Volvo’s sales in Q4 2021 were of chargeable vehicles - and six per cent were cars without a combustion engine altogether. 

Speaking at the presentation, Volvo’s Chief Financial Officer Bjorn Annwall said that one of the goals for 2022 is to accelerate the share of EVs in the company’s sales. The gradual easing of the semi-conductor crisis will help this, along with Volvo’s full takeover of a production site in Taizhou, China. 

Annwall said Volvo now has to match the progress made since 2019, when six per cent of its sales were of chargeable vehicles. “Now the focus shifts to the full-electric cars,” Annwall said. “We need to do the exact same journey that we’ve made with chargeable on BEVs - six per cent to around 34 per cent. It will be hard, but we have a full organisation ready to make this happen.”

Volvo’s outgoing CEO Hakan Samuelsson said the firm is “on track” to be fully electric by 2030, despite the still-modest proportion of EV sales. “We have sold every BEV that we have built,” he said. “The strategy has always been to offer PHEVs first, because there are still problems with the charging network. We’re in a very high percentage chargeable, we now have a new 40-series car that is born electric, we have a new flagship coming that will be born electric, and then something that is in size more of a ’20’; that will be a big contributor to our volume. We are on track.”

The new flagship - a successor to the current XC90 that is tipped to be called Embla - will be followed by additional large models with different body styles, Samuelsson revealed. 

“We’ll show everyone the new flagship this year,” he said. “The body styles will be more streamlined for pure-electric cars, but people still like the ease of step-in, step-out that comes with a higher vehicle. So that will come first, but there will be more variants on the big-car platform.”

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Editor-at-large

John started journalism reporting on motorsport – specifically rallying, which he had followed avidly since he was a boy. After a stint as editor of weekly motorsport bible Autosport, he moved across to testing road cars. He’s now been reviewing cars and writing news stories about them for almost 20 years.

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