Volvo EX30 city car to launch next year as entry model

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At the end of the presentation for the battery-electric 2023 Volvo EX90, automaker CEO Jim Rowan gave everyone a tease of a smaller model to debut next year. Sitting in the dark next to an equally dark EX90, the new model looked like a Mini Me version of the EX90 down to the chunky stance and taillight signature. There were rumblings among media that this was the new EX30. In an interview with Automotive News Europe, Rowan confirmed suspicions by calling the new small car by that name. The EX30 will take up the entry slot in the Volvo lineup, offered as part of the Care by Volvo subscription service to keep the price down for its Gen Z target market of first-time car buyers.

Dimensions are unknown, but the EX30 sits on the same Sustainable Experience Architecture (SEA) as the new Smart #1. The Smart is 168.1 inches long, 72 inches wide, and 64.4 inches wide. Our XC40 Recharge and C40 Recharge, both sitting on Volvo’s Compact Modular Architecture (CMA), are 174.8 inches long, 75.2 inches wide, and 65 inches high. Dimensions roundabout those of the Smart seem like a good starting point for the EX30’s size. Staying there for a moment, the Smart packs a 66-kWh battery, one motor making 268 horsepower, and can go up to 273 miles on a charge on the WLTP cycle.

Rowan said Volvo will offer a choice of batteries in the EX30 “so a customer can choose the range that best fits their lifestyle and their budget.” Remember, the Honda-e sells in markets like Europe with 35-kWh battery good for a range good for about 135 miles on a charge. The CEO said these Gen Z buyers “still want top safety equipment, a fantastic ride and high quality.” A lower price for a battery with a local range keeps that demographic in the loop, which also helps Volvo reach its goal of selling 1.2 million vehicles globally by 2025.

That year is also important from Rowan’s perspective because that’s when he believes ICE vehicles and EVs will reach price parity. At the moment, the ICE XC40 starting price is $17,200 less than the XC40 Recharge. Barring further global upheavals, Rowan said, “I still think we are very much on track for price parity, because prices will come down pretty quickly when supply starts to meet demand again. In addition, we are starting to see some really interesting things when it comes to anode and cathode materials and battery chemistries such as the use of LFP (lithium iron phosphate) in certain cases. That’s all going to bring down the cost to price parity.”

The EX30 will enter production in China next year, reaching showrooms in some markets before 2023 is out. It’s not clear yet if or when the city car will come to the U.S.