Aaron DiManna
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Volvo Shows Year-Over-Year Sales Growth in July

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A line of Volvo vehicles, all of which contributed to a year-over-year sales increase in July 2020
Photo: Volvo

Breaking news: the global auto industry has been disrupted in an unprecedented way by the COVID-19 pandemic. Production lines are moving slower than ever, factory workers are adopting new practices to keep each other safe, and dealerships are adapting to serve customers. However, in the midst of a nearly-universal drop in sales for most brands, Volvo showed strong year-over-year growth in July 2020.


The biggest and the best: The 2020 Volvo XC90


In July 2020, Volvo achieved a 10.3 percent year-over-year domestic increase from the same time last year, defying industry trends. Sales were predominantly driven by demand for Volvo’s SUVs — the XC40, XC60, and XC90 — which made up 72.8 percent of total sales. In July 2019, the segment only accounted for 63.4 percent, proving the public’s ongoing hunger for SUVs.

Progress around the globe

Meanwhile, its presence in the international market was even better, showing 14.2 percent more vehicles sold across Europe, the United States, and China. It’s worth noting that the automaker’s global lineup of electrified vehicles — which includes plug-in hybrid editions of the XC90, XC60, XC40, an upcoming all-electric XC40, and more — performed particularly well.

Recharge sales were more than twice what they were at the same time last year. Volvo reports that IHS data shows that “Volvo Cars was the leading electrified premium brand in Europe during the first half of 2020, with Recharge cars making up almost a quarter of total deliveries in the region.”

The future is electric

Volvo has made no bones about its ambitions in the all-electric world. Previously, the automaker voluntarily adopted California’s stricter-than-national emissions standards and offered one full year of free charging costs for its EVs. As a result, it sold just shy of 46,000 plug-in vehicles in 2019 and doubled its EV output in the first quarter of 2020.

The fact that Volvo is thriving while other companies are struggling speaks volumes about the quality of its vehicles. It also casts a concerningly prescient light on CEO Hakan Samuelsson’s prediction that the novel coronavirus might fuel EV sales.

Regardless, it’s reassuring to know that at least one corner of the automotive world isn’t just coping, but improving.


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