The History of Volvo Car Corporation
In 1927 a ball bearing manufacturer SKF for the subsidiary company under the name Volvo. Since the beginning of the company’s formation, Volvo is placed safety as its guiding principle and over the years has built up a reputation for overall safety. On April 14, 1927 a vehicle with the model distinction OV 4 would come off the assembly line starting the production for Volvo vehicles. The start of sales for the Volvo cars would be slow overall but with the introduction in 1928 of Volvo trucks the company would be completely sold out within six months. In 1929 six-cylinder Volvo passenger vehicle under the model PV651 would be an overall success as the vehicle was built to be durable for the local climate and offer a wider track for more stability and in this year the company would see its first profit.
By 1932 Volvo was becoming popular in selling many of its vehicles. Soon dealers for Volvo were asking the company to produce a less expensive version of the PV36 and as a result Volvo did just that with the introduction of the PV51 in 1936. In 1939 Volvo would soon be retooling its manufacturing plant to help the Allied effort World War II. By 1941 Volvo would acquire Svenska Flygmotor which is Volvo Aero to this day. The company would also deliver 50,000 vehicles from production. 1948 would see Volvo doubling its employees to over 6,000 as passenger vehicles were now the majority of the production. Volvo would also begin production on its line of tractors which would become quite popular. In 1955 Volvo passenger vehicles were becoming quite popular as its inexpensive PV 444 model would see its 100,000th vehicle run off the assembly line. This would also be the year the Volvo passenger cars would be introduced to the American market.
In 1961 Volvo would introduce the P1800 and the Volvo Amazon which would be considered the safest car on the road. This also is the year the Volvo would introduce its efficient and reliable B18 engine. In 1964 Volvo would finish production on its massive Torslanda auto manufacturing plant in Sweden and in the following year a manufacturing plant in Ghent, Belgium. The new Volvo vehicles that would be introduced would be using innovations such as crumple zones as well as collapsible steering columns and side protection in the event of a collision.
Volvo would continue to increase in size and sales over the years and even though the company was hit by the oil crisis in 1973 such as every other auto manufacturer, the company would still prevail with successes such as the Volvo 340 which would become one of the best-selling vehicles in the UK market in the 70’s and 80s. In 1979 Volvo subsidiaries would all become successful in their own right. Volvo Truck would be winning awards for the most popular and best-selling F7. Volvo Aero would be working with the European Ariane project supplying combustors. This would also be the year that Renault would acquire shares in the company. Volvo BM would start one of the biggest reconstructing programs in the country’s history. By 1982 the formation of Volvo subsidiaries would include:
- Volvo Cars
- Volvo Trucks
- Volvo Buses
- Volvo Components
- Volvo Penta
- Volvo Data
- Volvo Aero
In 1992 Volvo passenger cars were seeing innovation through vehicle design and safety. Volvo’s heavy industry vehicles such as buses were starting to see drastic changes in design. Volvo would begin to invest heavily to design commercial buses that would run off of natural gas. This would also be year with the company researching hybrid power and cleaner automotive technology. Volvo Penta subsidiary would begin a joint venture with the Outboard Marine Corporation.
In 1999 Volvo Cars would be sold to Ford Motor Company as AB Volvo would focus on its other industries. At a price of $6.45 billion, Ford Motor Company would take control until Volvo stopped posting profits and with the Ford Motor Company going through a drastic reconstruction, decided to place Volvo as well as the company’s other premium line vehicles for sale. The Ford Motor Company would sell its rights and holdings to Volvo Automobile for $1.8 billion. Today the company currently employs 20,000 individuals and still has its headquarters in Gothenburg, Sweden.
Categories: Production Cars