The Volvo XC90, the Swedish company's luxury SUV, has been redesigned and is expected to be available next month as a 2015 model.

The new model will be available in a hybrid version that uses both a four-cylinder gas engine and an electric motor to generate a combined 400 HP, yet still produces just 60g/km of CO2 emissions. That is a lower emissions output than a Toyota Prius, another hybrid vehicle. The Prius is rated at 91g/km of CO2 emissions.

Volvo refers to this combination of internal combustion and electric power as their Twin Engine drivetrain technology.

In the seven-seat plug-in hybrid T8 version of the all-wheel-drive XC90, the front-mounted four-cylinder gas engine is rated at 320 HP and sends power to the front wheels. It is joined by an 80 HP electric motor that uses its energy to motivate the rear wheels.

"There are no compromises when you drive an all-new XC90. In the past you could either have power or low CO2 emissions. But with the XC90 you can have both," says Peter Mertens, Senior Vice President of Research and Development of the Volvo Car Group.

The four-cylinder gas engine in the T8 XC90 uses both a supercharger and a turbocharger to extract an enormous amount of power out of a two-liter engine. The supercharger supports the bottom end of the power range, also giving the motor a big, naturally aspirated feel. The turbocharger engages when airflow is sufficient. The 80 HP electric motor supplies immediate torque to the rear wheels.

The driver can also select pure electric mode, for quiet and emission-free urban driving with a range of approximately 25 miles. In all-electric mode, the vehicle is powered by the rear wheels only. A flick of a switch again, on the fly, and the T8 XC90 is once again an all-wheel-drive, gas and electric-powered, 400 HP SUV.

This technology makes the T8 XC90 a plug-in electric car, a hybrid car and a high-performance car in one package.

The debut of the XC90 range will also mark the introduction of Volvo's Scalable Product Architecture (SPA), a method of producing several different types of vehicles from one basic chassis, powertrain and suspension design standard. In Volvo's case, SPA will allow the company to efficiently incorporate new safety features and in-car technologies into all of their future vehicles. The SPA modular-based system will also maximize interior space in Volvo vehicles.

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