Volvo reverses decision to dump classic estates

Volvo estate
The Volvo estate has been a regular part of UK life for decades

Car manufacturer Volvo has decided to reverse its decision over plans to axe its classic estates and has saved them from the scrapheap.

Motorists will now see the iconic car return to British showrooms again, less than a year after a decision to stop selling the classics was met with outcry from customers.

The scale of the demand for the vehicle led Volvo to confirm last week that its V60 and V90 models would roll back onto the production line after a “resurgence in demand” for its “estate products in recent months”.

Volvo said it was “blown away” by the response following its decision last August to remove its signature vehicles from sale because of poor sales.

They instead decided to focus on the production of SUVs [sports utility vehicles] and electric cars.

Tom Lynch, Volvo UK’s head of communications, in an interview with the Sunday Times, said that many Volvo customers were “up in arms” following its original decision to withdraw the cars from sale.

Volvo classic estate
Motorists wrote to Volvo to plead for estates to remain on sale in the UK

In a statement, the company confirmed the return of the V60 and V90, and said: “We were thrilled by the many comments from customers and media last year, with many stories and memories of how our estate cars have been a huge part of their lives. We look forward to helping create more.”

Outcry from motorists

Following the announcement by Volvo last year, Top Gear magazine compared the decision as “nearly as big as Ford laying the Fiesta to rest”.

Motorist Margaret Dupp said at the time that the decision to end estate production was “very sad”.

“We’ve had Volvo V70s for 25 years. Wonderful cars,” she said.

“Our first one came with a factory-fitted labrador (choice of black, chocolate or yellow), tartan picnic rug and pipe holder.”

Police driving instructor Bob Isaacs, 76, a lifelong Volvo driver, said his 1995 Volvo 850 estate remained a part of the family.

Mr Isaacs, who lives in Isleworth, west London, said: “My old Volvo has been here, there and everywhere. My grandkids travelled in the rear-facing seats when they were young, and in the boot I’ve carried anything you can buy in a garden centre: turf, paving stones, bags of pea shingle and gravel.

“I don’t like the SUVs. I like the older cars. We had a family holiday in Scotland at the end of April — me and my daughter and the grandkids and all of their stuff. Only the Volvo estate could have done that.”

Another Volvo estate owner, who got in touch with the firm following last year’s announcement, said his family had owned 32 Volvos in total and “will not be buying SUVs”.

“I am on my eighth Volvo estate. We have six Volvos in the family right now,” they said. “We used to buy them in pairs. We will not be buying SUVs so it looks as if this is goodbye — very sad. I guess nothing lasts for ever. Someone else will fill the gap and they can have our money.”

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