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Inside view of a Volvo Cars factory that is to restart the production after a standstill due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) situation, in Torslanda, Gothenburg, Sweden. (via REUTERS)
Inside view of a Volvo Cars factory that is to restart the production after a standstill due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) situation, in Torslanda, Gothenburg, Sweden. (via REUTERS)

Volvo may delay facelifts, cut back on R&D projects to save funds

  • Volvo CEO Håkan Samuelsson has reportedly said that there is a need to assess the R&D projects currently in development to 'reduce our cash burn.'
  • He has, however, said there would be no change in plans for Volvo's autonomous and electric vehicle plans.

Volvo is likely to cut back on the number of facelifts it brings to various international markets as well as bring down research and development projects in the pipeline in a bid to save money in the currently challenging times.

Speaking to Automotive News Europe, Volvo CEO Håkan Samuelsson reportedly elaborated that there is a need to assess if the 'thousands of R&D projects currently under development' are absolutely essential. Similarly, a number of planned facelifts - mid-cycle refreshes - are reportedly under the scanner and may get delayed. Samuelsson is learnt to have said that there is a need to 'reduce our cash burn.'

(Also read: Volvo and Daimler tie up to develop fuel cell for trucks)

There is, however, no plan to take the pedal off of Volvo's autonomous and electric vehicle plans as Samuelsson has reportedly said changes to these could put Volvo's product strategy at risk. He, instead, has said that focus on future technologies remains as important as ever.

A number of car makers around the world are increasingly looking at developing new strategies to deal with what is certainly going to be a very challenging year owing to the Covid-19 disease. Demand has slumped in almost every major market around the world as lockdowns keep people at home in order to check on the spread of Covid-19. In Europe, for instance, new car sales plunge by 51.8% in the month of March. (Full report here)

April is likely to be even worse.

Market analysts feel that even offers and incentives are unlikely to lure buyers back to showrooms by the dozen and those looking for a buy could switch to online channels.

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