Volvo's new plant in Charleston, South Carolina, isn't quite up and humming yet, but the company's next-generation S60 sedan, which is scheduled to be built there, will go without a diesel engine option.
Volvo has also confirmed that all of its new models launched from 2019 will be available as either a mild petrol hybrid, plug-in petrol hybrid or battery electric vehicle.
Volvo on Wednesday announced that from 2019 it will no longer launch cars fitted with diesel engines. "We will phase out cars with only an internal combustion engine, with [gasoline] hybrid versions as a transitional option as we move towards full electrification".
That means the S60 will only be available with petrol and hybrid units from launch, with all-electric models to follow in the near-future.
Volvo is set to ditch diesel by never launching another new vehicle with a diesel engine.
Although diesels now emit more Carbon dioxide per kilometer than their petrol counterparts, Samuelson said hybridisation will help match figures achieved by diesels. Volvo says a mild hybrid version of the auto will arrive in 2019.
But this is not going to happen overnight, as Volvo expects fully-electric cars to account for just 50 percent of its global sales by 2025 and even that estimation is perhaps a bit ambitious. The S60's wagon sibling, the V60, was unveiled earlier this year. Production of the new S60 will start this fall at Volvo Cars' new manufacturing facility in the U.S. state of SC. The Charleston plant will be the only manufacturing location for the new S60, meaning American-built S60s will be sold in the United States market as well as overseas through exports.
Samuelson said hybridisation could be the key to helping petrol cars match the Carbon dioxide emissions targets of diesel cars while offering superior fuel economy.