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History of Volvo Cars

Volvo_PV4_Sedan_1927

Volvo Car Corporation, or Volvo Personvagnar AB, is a Swedish premium automobile manufacturer, headquartered in the VAK building in Gothenburg, and owned by Zhejiang Geely Holding Group of China.

Volvo Car Corporation was founded in 1927, in Gothenburg, Sweden, originally as a subsidiary company to the ball bearing maker SKF. When Volvo AB was introduced on the Swedish stock exchange in 1935, SKF sold most of the shares in the company. Volvo Cars was owned by AB Volvo until 1999, when it was acquired by the Ford Motor Company as part of its Premier Automotive Group. Geely Holding Group then acquired Volvo Cars from Ford in 2010.

Volvo Cars manufactures and markets sport utility vehicles, station wagons, sedans, compact executive sedans, and coupes. With approximately 2,300 local dealers from around 100 national sales companies worldwide, Volvo Cars’ largest markets are the United States, Sweden, China, Germany, the United Kingdom, and Belgium. In 2011, Volvo Cars recorded global sales of 449,255 cars, an increase of 20.3% compared to 2010.

Volvo company was founded in 1927 in Gothenburg, Sweden, The company was created as a subsidiary company 100% owned by SKF.Assar Gabrielsson was appointed the managing director and Gustav Larson as the technical manager.

“Cars are driven by people. The guiding principle behind everything we make at Volvo, therefore, is and must remain, safety”, Assar Gabrielsson and Gustav Larson 1927.

The trademark Volvo (which is Latin for I roll) was first registered by SKF the 11 May 1915 with the intention to use it for a special series of ball bearing for the American market (however in the application for the trademark, it was also designated for the purpose of automobiles), but it was never used for this purpose. SKF trademark as it looks today was used instead for all the SKF-products. Some pre-series of Volvo-bearings stamped with the brand name ‘Volvo’ were manufactured but was never released to the market and it was not until 1927 that the trademark was used again, now as a trademark and company name for an automobile.

The first Volvo car left the assembly line April 14, 1927, and was called Volvo ÖV 4. After this the young company produced closed top and cabriolet vehicles, which were designed to hold strong in the Swedish climate and terrain. In the registration application for Volvo logotype in 1927, they simply made a copy of the entire radiator for ÖV4, viewed from the front.

Presented in 1944, the Volvo PV444 passenger car only entered production in 1947. It was the smallest Volvo yet and was to take the lion’s share of Volvo production, a well as spearheading their move into the profitable American market. The first Volvos arrived in the United States in 1955, after hardware wholesaler Leo Hirsh began distributing cars in California. Later, Texas was added, and in 1956 Volvo themselves began importing cars to the US. North America has consistently provided Volvo with their main outlet since.

In 1964 Volvo opened its Torslanda plant in Sweden, which currently is one of its largest production sites (chiefly large cars and SUV). Then in 1965 the Ghent, Belgium plant was opened, which is the company’s second largest production site (chiefly small cars). Finally in 1989 the Uddevalla plant in Sweden was opened, which is now jointly operated by Volvo Car Corporation and Pininfarina of Italy.

A collection of Volvo’s most important historical vehicles are now housed in The Volvo Museum, which opened in a permanent location in Arendal at Hisingen on May 30, 1995.[7] For several years, the collection had been housed at “The Blue Hangar,” at the then closedTorslanda Airport.

In the early 1970s, Volvo acquired the passenger car division of the Dutch company DAF, and marketed their small cars as Volvos before releasing the Dutch-built Volvo 340, which went on to be one of the biggest-selling cars in the UK market in the 1980s. 1986 marked a record year for Volvo in the US, with 113,267 cars sold. The appearance of Japanese luxury brands like Acura and Lexus in subsequent years meant the loss of a significant market share for Volvo, one which they have never regained.

In 1999, Volvo Group decided to sell its automobile manufacturing business and concentrate on commercial vehicles. Ford saw advantages in acquiring a profitable prestige mid-size European automobile manufacturer, well renowned for its safety aspects, as an addition to its Premier Automotive Group. The buyout of Volvo Cars was announced on January 28, 1999, and in the following year the acquisition was completed at a price of $6.45 billion USD. As a result of the divestiture, the Volvo trademark is now utilized by two separate companies:

Read more at Wikipedia