An interesting discussion has broken out in Sweden that began with the presentation of the Volvo C40 Recharge P8. It is unusual for the conditions there, because it is usually quite easy in Sweden. Volvo introduces a new car, the nation applauds and is proud, everyone is satisfied. That was once. Things are changing, not just in Sweden.
But maybe it's time icons fell. Wolfsburg has experiences with the Golf 8, which, unlike any of its predecessors, was not greeted with enthusiasm either. Why should things go better for Gothenburg?
The Swedes don't like the C40 Recharge P8
The story started badly at the very beginning. There was the people who didn't want to applaud. The thumb for the C40 Recharge P8 was only for very few readers of the AMS up, the vast majority lowered it. As if that weren't bad enough on its own, the electric car met with a closed phalanx of rejection from the trade and the press.
The dealers were understandably not happy because Volvo only wants to sell the C40 online. The press was not enthusiastic because the new Volvo raised questions. Buy exclusively online, equipment only available in packages, that is not premium and certainly not a Volvo. One or the other commentator was reminded of the equipment packages for Asian cars or the sale of smartphones.
It was assumed that the new policy at Volvo is to bring as many electric cars as possible with the shortest possible shelf life to the people. That has nothing to do with environmental protection or sustainability, as sworn.
Recharge tires = all-season tires
All of that wasn't good, but then came the all-season tire thing. Volvo only delivers all electric cars on specially optimized all-season tires. The customer does not (yet) have a choice when purchasing online. Volvo had simply forgotten that. An absurdity for Sweden and the manufacturer reacted awkwardly to the initial press request and referred to a good compromise.
With which the big elephant suddenly stood in the room, with the question of how all-season tires could be reconciled with the safety requirements of the Swedish brand. Actually an impossibility, especially with a Volvo. The media storm broke out. Swedish readers have learned a lot about the difference between summer and winter tires in the trade press in the last few days.
In general, the brand reaped one negative pressNobody rushed to help, unusual for Sweden, who is otherwise so in love with consensus. Because if more vehicles in Sweden were on the road with all-season tires for sheer convenience, then it was found that this was negative for safety in general. For the simple reason that nobody wants to get into the situation where an electric car weighing more than 2 tons is moving out of control and is moving towards you.
The fact that you can get the Volvo C40 Recharge P8 with summer and winter tires on request, you have to contact the hotline, no longer played a role at this point. On the contrary, because the almost € 40 additional monthly leasing costs would make the electric car more expensive, the prices are not honest.
The question arises, why does Volvo use all-season tires?
The answer is simple. It is the pressure of the law that weighs on the auto industry. The industry is reacting and has long been delivering new cars with an average tire profile of 0,7 mm less than a few years ago.
Less profile guarantees optimized values in the WLTP cycle, but also a shortened service life and limited safety in the event of aquaplaning. What was well thought out and should serve efficiency is a burden for the customer. He pays the bill for new tires that are due early.
Optimized tires on electric cars bring more range and better efficiency. The result looks great on paper and the range increases. The other side is that even a very good all-season tire never comes close to a winter tire and is always a compromise.
For Volvo in any case, the media skirmish in Sweden was lost. But the manufacturer quickly learned from it. Not that, as a security pioneer, you backtrack and focus on core values. And again relies on a six-monthly tire change.
No sooner did the excitation curve flatten out in Sweden than the manufacturer gave one press report in which the decision for recharge tires, as the all-season tires are called in Volvo slang, is justified.
Probably only as a precaution and in case a similar discussion would start somewhere in the world.
How do the readers see it? Are all-season tires sufficient or does safety take precedence over comfort and do you have the tires changed? Vote!