New Scalable Product Architecture enables Volvo Car Group to move faster towards a crash-free future
GOTHENBURG, Sweden, 12 December, 2013, /PRNewswire/— The elegant design possibilities are the most visually evident – but far from the only – advantages of Volvo Car Group’s new Scalable Product Architecture (SPA).
The ingenious new architecture also enables the company to reinforce its safety leadership and increase its momentum towards the aim that by 2020, no one should be killed or seriously injured in a new Volvo.
Recent independent data from STRADA (Swedish Traffic Accident Data Acquisition) show that modern Volvos have close to 60 per cent lower injury rates compared to the average modern vehicle in Sweden, which in turn has one of the lowest injury rates in the world.
The new SPA architecture enables significant improvements both when it comes to offering protection in worst-case scenarios and when creating innovative features that support the driver in avoiding accidents.
“We retain our uncompromising attitude to offering superior crash protection,” says Jan Ivarsson, Senior Manager, Safety Strategy and Requirements at Volvo Car Group. “The new architecture opens up for further improvements. Seven per cent of the safety cage in the original XC90 was made of hot-formed boron steel. The structure in the upcoming all-new XC90 features over 40 per cent hot-formed steel, which improves strength but without adding mass or weight.”
In cars built on the new SPA architecture, the smart belt pre-tension systems increase the retention of the occupants before and during a collision. For example, the rearward-facing radar is used to detect a rear impact, allowing the safety belts to be tightened in advance in order to keep the occupants in place.
Camera, radar and sensor technologies are extended to detect more objects around the car and to offer support at higher speeds and in more situations, such as at crossings.
“One of the most important focus areas is to help prevent unintentional road departures by autonomous steering intervention in critical situations. This is the collision type that results in most deaths and serious injuries in modern traffic,” says Jan Ivarsson.
The new features also include detection and auto brake for large animals and pedestrians when driving in the dark.
Enhancing the driving experience
The sensors used by the collision-avoiding solutions are also part of the extended range of features that makes the drive more enjoyable and comfortable.
This includes Adaptive Cruise Control with steer assist, introduced in the upcoming all-new XC90. The car automatically follows the vehicle ahead in queues. The Scalable Product Architecture is also designed to accommodate the implementation of autonomous technologies.
“Allowing the car to act automatically is crucial when moving towards the vision that future cars will not crash at all. Technologies enabled by our new architecture will bring us closer to this ultimate goal,” concludes Jan Ivarsson.
Unique electrical architecture
The new architecture includes a ground-breaking new electrical architecture, which is designed to make it easy to add sophisticated functions and rapidly implement new technology in fast-moving areas such as microprocessor, sensor and camera technology.
Stefan Elfström, Corporate Spokesman,
Volvo Car Group