THE move towards electrification will happen at a faster pace now, says Hakan Samuelsson, the CEO of Volvo Car Group.

Speaking to Peter Campbell, global motor industry correspondent for the Financial Times at a ‘fireside chat’ during the Global Boardroom online conference (13 May), Samuelsson said that the COVID-19 crisis would accelerate the move towards electric cars.

“Electrification will go faster, of that I have no doubt,” he said. “This will include premium cars, which can be small or big. Premium is no longer defined as a large car.”

Samuelsson also said the coronavirus crisis had hastened the digitisation of the car buying process during the discussion on How is COVID-19 changing the future of the car?.

“The way we buy a car, well that is changing too. Do we need such a physical presence? The crisis is showing that e-commerce is working and that will encourage more and more buyers to look online.”

However, the Volvo boss said that this view didn’t mean the end of the dealer.

“We will continue to need retail partners as well as service partners, so dealers will remain an important part of the car selling landscape.”

FT How is COVID 19 changing the future of the car
FT webinar featuring FT’s Peter Campbell (left) and Håkan Samuelsson, the CEO of Volvo Car Group
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