Volvo to invest 10 billion kronor in iconic Gothenburg factory

Volvo plans to invest 10 billion kronor in its Gothenburg plant in Sweden as it switches production to electric cars.

Volvo to invest 10 billion kronor in iconic Gothenburg factory
Volvo's plant at Torslanda, Gothenburg, opened in 1964. Photo: Thomas Johansson/TT

The Swedish subsidiary of China’s Geely, which announced last March that it will move to a 100-percent-electric range by 2030, will make this investment in the Torslanda plant “in coming years, in preparation for the production of that next generation of fully electric cars”.

The factory, which opened in 1964, is the oldest currently in use and largest of the Gothenburg-based carmaker, with nearly 6,500 employees, producing 1,250 vehicles per day.

This investment comes on the heels of another major project in Volvo’s electrification strategy, the announcement of the construction of a joint factory with Swedish battery maker Northvolt, also near Gothenburg.

Part of a research and development centre, the battery factory will eventually employ 3,000 people and is part of an investment of around 3 billion euros.

From 2019 Volvo Cars has limited itself to only selling hybrid or all-electric models, and is one of the most advanced manufacturers of electric vehicles.

But car manufacturers worldwide are rapidly moving towards electric vehicles and are increasing the number of factory conversions to move away from the combustion engine.

French company Renault is investing in its Douai site in northern France, as is Volkswagen in Zwickau in Germany and the Japanese company Nissan in Sunderland in England.

Member comments

  1. Battery-electric cars will be the costliest mistake of the 21st century in terms of transportation.

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SAS pilot unions delay strike for three days of extra talks

Sweden’s pilot union has agreed to postpone the strike planned for Wednesday by three days in the hope of striking a last minute deal with the SAS airline.

SAS pilot unions delay strike for three days of extra talks

The strike, due to start on June 29th, has been pushed forward until just after midnight on July 1st, to provide time for extra negotiations with the Scandinavian airline’s management over a new collective bargaining agreement. 

After weeks with intensive negotiations over a new agreement between SAS leadership and 1,000 of the airline’s pilots, both sides are now willing to continue discussions, pushing back the deadline by three days. 

“SAS and the Norwegian pilot union are in agreement that we will continue negotiations for three days,” Norwegian national mediator Mats Wilhelm Ruland said. “There’s been intensive work towards finding a solution.”

Karin Nyman, Swedish press officer for SAS, said that the company was glad to have been given more time.

“It means above everything else that our customers will be able to travel over the next few days,” she told Swedish newswire TT.

Martin Lindgren, chairman of the Swedish SAS branch of the Swedish Air Line Pilots Association (SPF), would not comment on the content of the negotiations, but said that it was worth continuing to try and reach an agreement.

“We feel a great responsibility towards both SAS and our members, but above all towards our passengers,” he said in a press statement.

“Although we have gone to great lengths to come to an agreement, many issues remain unsolved. The strike can only be avoided if SAS show a real will to meet us. As of now, we’re choosing to give the other side yet another chance to do that.”

The airline’s Danish press officer, Alexandra Kaoukji, wrote in a statement to Danish newswire Ritzau that mediators believe “there is a possibility of reaching consensus” on a new agreement between the airline and pilots.

“The new 72-hour deadline means that our passengers will be able to travel,” she told the newswire. “We’re very happy about that. Our hope is therefore that we can find a solution and that passengers will not be affected.”

Nyman was also hopeful that both sides would be able to come to an agreement without resorting to strike action.

“We can only state that we’ve had constructive talks in recent days in our negotiations, and obviously the mediators have then made the assessment that there is a chance of reaching an agreement,” she said.

Pilots are unhappy that SAS is hiring new pilots on cheaper contracts in their two subsidiaries, SAS Link and SAS Connect. If the two parties cannot come to an agreement, up to 30,000 SAS passengers could be affected per day, the airline said on June 27th.