Will Volvo’s New Electric Minivan Be Available in the United States?
Volvo is set to enter the minivan market with an all-new and all-electric people mover dubbed the EM90 as the Swedish automaker charts its course to a fully electric lineup by the end of the decade. The Volvo minivan will be fully revealed on Nov. 12, at which time we will learn more about its specs and get a full view of the model as of this writing, Volvo has only released a teaser image.
So, will the EM90 enter the American market and thus serve as a more upscale alternative to the Chrysler Pacifica, Kia Carnival, Toyota Sienna, and Honda Odyssey, or will it remain forbidden fruit?
The Volvo EM90 is purportedly based on a Chinese people mover
Volvo is keeping details of the EM90 close to its chest ahead of the November 12th reveal. The automaker has so far only revealed the EM90 will serve as the automaker’s first fully electric “premium MPV” and will serve as “a Scandinavian living room on the move.”
According to Reuters, the EM90 will be based on the Zeekr 009 minivan that was introduced by the Chinese automaker in late 2022. Zeekr, an all-electric brand, operates under the umbrella of Geely, the China-based company which has owned a majority stake in Volvo since 2010.
Though it’s not yet known how closely the EM90 and Zeekr 009 will align on the spec sheet, the latter is certainly a far more premium minivan than what is currently available in the U.S.
The 009 sports a futuristic design and either a 116- or 140-kWh battery with dual motors producing an impressive 536 horsepower and 505 lb.-ft. of torque. According to China’s testing standards, the 009 returns 436-511 miles of range of a single charge, depending on battery selection.
Inside, the 009 features three rows of seating with second-row captain’s chairs, a 15.4-inch touchscreen, a 15.6-inch dropdown screen in the second row, and luxury appointments throughout with a starting price that’s equivalent to about $74,000.
If Volvo brings the EM90 to the U.S., it will occupy a unique position is the minivan market as the only fully-electric, non-commercial van and as the only people mover from a luxury automaker. However, the outlook for Volvo’s minivan coming stateside is far from guaranteed.
Will the Volvo EM90 come to the U.S.?
Though we’ll soon learn more about the EM90, at least for now it appears Volvo’s new EV minivan is primarily, if not exclusively, meant for Asian markets. Car and Driver reports preorders for the EM90 will coincide with the model’s full reveal, but only for Chinese customers.
Minivans are far more popular in Asian markets, and it seems Volvo is limiting the EM90’s presence to these areas for now. Though there could be a ready-made core of buyers in the U.S. seeking a more upscale and all-electric minivan, Volvo seems likely to focus more on electrifying its SUV lineup in the states.
Volvo has already done so by unveiling the EX90, a seven-passenger all-electric equivalent to the XC90 SUV. Volvo claims the EX90 can deliver up to 300 miles of range with up to 496 horsepower from its dual-motor drivetrain. Preorders are currently open for the EX90, which is set to debut for the 2024 model year.
It’s fairly safe to assume the automaker will focus on electrifying its SUV lineup here, where the body style is far more popular than minivans. However, the automaker could choose to carve out its own niche as the only automaker offering a luxury, all-electric minivan in the U.S. with the EM90, and that considering may give the automaker pause in only offering its upcoming luxury EV minivan in Asian markets.