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Volvo turns to eBay for innovative truck auction

Swedish truckmaker Volvo has turned to internet auction site eBay to sell the first edition of the Volvo FH truck in a charity listing complete with videos of the truck in daredevil stunts filmed by Hollywood directors.

Volvo turns to eBay for innovative truck auction

The new Volvo FH truck was made available for all eBay shoppers in Europe in the auction service’s UK site starting the morning of Wednesday, September 19th.

The bidding started at one euro, but had risen to over €215,000 ($278,769) by Thursday afternoon, with more then 80 bids having been registered.

“This is a unique opportunity to acquire a brand new, full specification long-haul truck directly from the Swedish manufacturer,” wrote the Swedish carmaker on eBay.

“The iconic number 1 truck is a one-off special edition and a collector’s item. All proceeds of the auction will be donated to the Star for Life Program – helping children in their fight against HIV in South Africa.”

In the advert, Volvo listed what they refer to as the top ten features of the new vehicle, including a host of adrenaline-filled videos.

One of these film clips, featured below, shows the “Ballerina stunt” where a woman traverses a tightrope strung between two of the new trucks as they speed down an empty highway.

That video alone has been viewed on YouTube over 5 million times since it was uploaded last month.

The bidding for the new truck ends September 29th.

Postage for the vehicle is free.

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VOLVO

Sweden’s Volvo regains strength after pandemic puts brakes on earnings

Swedish truck maker Volvo Group was hit by a sharp drop in earnings due to the coronavirus pandemic, but business rebounded at the end of the year.

Sweden's Volvo regains strength after pandemic puts brakes on earnings
Volvo Group CEO Martin Lundstedt. Photo: Adam Ihse/TT

In 2020, the group saw “dramatic fluctuations in demand” due to the Covid-19 pandemic, chief executive Martin Lundstedt said in a statement.

For 2021, Volvo raised its sales forecasts in its trucks division – its core business – in Europe, North America and Brazil.

However, it said it also expected “production disturbances and increased costs” due to a “strained” supply chain, noting a global shortage of semiconductors across industries.

The truck making sector is particularly sensitive to the global economic situation and is usually hard hit during crises.

In March, as the pandemic took hold around the world, Volvo suspended operations at most of its sites in 18 countries and halted production at Renault Trucks, which it owns, in Belgium and France.

Operations gradually resumed mid-year, but not enough to compensate for the drop in earnings.

With annual sales down 22 percent to 338 billion kronor (33.4 billion euros, $40 billion), the group posted a 46 percent plunge in net profit to 19.3 billion kronor (1.9 billion euros).

Operating margin fell from 11.5 to 8.1 percent.

However, the group did manage to cut costs by 20 percent.

“We have significantly improved our volume and cost flexibility, which were crucial factors behind our earnings resilience in 2020,” the group said.

Volvo's business regained strength in the second half of the year.

“Customer usage of trucks and machines increased when the Covid-19 restrictions were eased during the summer and this development continued during both the third and fourth quarters,” it said.

“Both the transport activity and the construction business are back at levels on par with the prior year in most markets.”

For the fourth quarter alone, the company reported a 38-percent rise in net profit from a year earlier.

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