The expectation is aggressive. Few industry experts were willing to put their names to a date, but most expected that date to be near the end of the decade.
Economies of scale will do some of the work – everything gets less expensive the more of it we build. But Rowan says improved battery technology will do the rest. “Technology will increase range. Fewer batteries, but more range, at a lower cost – we’ll get there.”
Rowan, a Scotsman in charge of a Swedish company, came to Volvo from vacuum maker Dyson at the start of 2022. He has overseen the development of Volvo’s future flagship model, the 2024 Volvo EX90, which premiered last week.
EX90 pioneered a host of new technologies. These include LiDAR-based safety systems designed to see obstacles in the dark before the driver can detect them and interior radar sensitive enough to spot a child breathing under a blanket to trigger a rear-seat passenger alert. But it uses the same lithium-ion battery technology as other electric vehicles currently on the market.
Other industry experts were less optimistic about price parity. Analyst Sam Aboul Samed told Automotive News that Volvo may get there simply because it makes luxury cars, where prices are high from the start. He said, “In the more mainstream sectors, you don’t have a margin margin to work with.”