The race to create the ultimate luxury SUV is in full swing. Volvo is the latest to join the mad dash. Earlier this month, the Swedish automaker introduced a version of its new XC90 SUV equipped with a pair of private-jet-like rear captain’s chairs.
Now, the Swedes have taken it to a whole new level by installing a full-blown luxury lounge in the back of their new SUV.
Introduced this week at the 2015 Shanghai Auto Show, the XC90 Excellence Lounge Concept allows rear-seat passengers to have an experience they’re not going to enjoy in any other luxury SUV on the market.
So how did Volvo pull this off? They started by removing the front passenger seat and then — in its place — installed a what the company calls a “lounge console,” featuring a massive 17-inch multimedia screen that can transform into a large tray table.
In essence, Volvo has equipped its SUV with a multi-function ottoman/entertainment center.
That’s in addition to the reclining ,massaging chairs, Champagne chiller, and crystal Champagne flutes.
The new interior is the clearest indication that Volvo wants to stake out its territory as a luxurious executive lifestyle brand.
“The intention with this concept is to showcase two things — firstly that Volvo Cars is aware of the needs of our executive customers and secondly, that with design innovation and modern materials we can effectively create passenger experience that is unique in the premium car segment,” Volvo Cars Group senior vice president of design Thomas Ingenlath said in a statement.
It’s no coincidence that the Lounge Concept was introduced to the public in Shanghai. Chinese executives are particularly keen on chauffeur driven luxury cars, rear seat room, comfort, and functionality. As a result, automakers such as Volvo, BMW, and Audi have — at great expense sometimes — created “long wheelbase,” limo-like variants of their vehicles just for China.
So far, the Lounge Concept is just that — a concept. But if enough executives around the world find the design appealing, I’m sure Volvo can be persuaded to put it into production.
Have a closer look at the Volvo XC90 Excellence Lounge Concept below: