Volvo Concept Recharge is the electric wagon of the future

Volvo on Wednesday unveiled the Concept Recharge, an electric wagon that previews the design direction of the Swedish automaker’s future EVs.

The Concept Recharge has an EV-specific architecture that eliminates the engine compartment, and incorporates a battery pack mounted under a flat floor, Volvo said in a press release. This allowed designers to extend the wheelbase and reduce overhangs, creating more interior space, according to the automaker.

Designers also repositioned the seats and lowered the hood, giving the Concept Recharge the high driving position of an SUV, but with better aerodynamic qualities. The concept also has a more upright roof line and rear glass, making it look—with the vertical taillights—a lot like older generations of Volvo wagons.

The lack of a grille advertises the Concept Recharge’s electric powertrain, while an updated version of Volvo’s trademark “Thor’s hammer” headlights incorporates new technology that keeps the main headlight units shielded until needed.

In keeping with current trends, Volvo installed a 15-inch infotainment touchscreen, and a digital instrument cluster as well.

The Concept Recharge also features integrated lidar sensors, which Volvo will start adding to production cars next year beginning with the next-generation XC90 crossover SUV. An electric version of the new XC90 is planned, likely using an EV-specific platform similar to the Concept Recharge’s underpinnings.

That will mark a shift from Volvo’s first production EVs. The Volvo XC40 Recharge and upcoming C40 Recharge (as well as the Polestar 2) all use the Compact Modular Architecture (CMA) platform, which is shared with internal-combustion models.

Volvo plans to make 50% of its vehicle sales all-electric by the middle of this decade, and has said it will sell only electric cars beginning in 2030. The automaker has indicated that its South Carolina factory will be the first dedicated to EVs.

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