Volvo's Rearview Mirror

Story by James Heine • Photo Courtesy of Volvo

Among those attending Elkhart Lake Vintage Festival and the Volvo Nationals this past September was Volvo Car USA President and CEO Lex Kerssemakers. We caught up with him while he was helping to judge the 75-car, all-Volvo concours. We began by asking Kerssemakers how events such as ELVF and the Volvo Nationals fit in with the auto maker’s identity and goals. “If you don’t respect the past, there is no future,” he replied. “You always need to link those two.”

For the past six or seven years, he said, Volvo’s presence in North America has been “a little bit silent.” Now, however, with a new product portfolio coming online, he said it’s time to better link past and present.

“We are in the middle of a major turnaround in respect [to] products,” Kerssemakers said. “It’s so heavy that by 2019, the XC90 will be the oldest car in the portfolio–and that car was only launched a year ago.”

The cars on display at the Volvo Nationals and throughout the concours were a perfect example of Volvo’s legacy and its commitment to durability and reliability. Kerssemakers noted, “This plays an important role in the brand of Volvo, and it will continue to play an important role. So, yes, we are very proud of our past. We are very proud of all these cars.”–James Heine

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