GOTHENBURG, Sweden — Three-quarters of the orders for Volvo's new 2016 Volvo XC90 SUV are for the top-of-the-range Inscription model, an indication that the relaunch of the company is on track, Volvo announced on Wednesday.
Volvo kicked off a new era with the debut of the XC90, which is on sale now at Volvo dealerships.
"With 76 percent of customers choosing the top-end Inscription model, it is fair to say that we have now entrenched our position as a premium carmaker," said Alain Visser, senior vice president for Volvo marketing sales and customer service, in a statement.
The company added there is "huge demand" for the XC90. The automaker has received nearly 57,000 orders for the new XC90, outstripping forecast sales of 50,000 for this year.
The company is running three shifts at its plant in Torslanda, Sweden, to meet customer demand.
The Inscription is a $6,500 trim package that adds a long list of luxury items, including 20-inch 10-spoke wheels, a silver matte grille and Nappa leather trim in the cabin.
Pricing on the Inscription model starts at $56,395, including a $995 destination charge.
In the 13 years since the debut of the original XC90, Volvo has moved from Ford ownership into the hands of the Chinese conglomerate, Geely. The all-new XC90 is the first fruit of that partnership, a new business model that does not rely on the Ford parts catalog.
The XC90 is said to be a bellwether of Volvo's fortunes.
Volvo noted that the XC90 "marks the beginning of a new chapter in Volvo's history, capturing its future design direction, incorporating its own range of new technologies and utilizing its new Scalable Product Architecture technology."
The technology allows Volvo to use shared component systems and chassis platforms to develop vehicles faster and less expensively.
Volvo will build a new $500-million manufacturing facility in South Carolina starting this fall. The new facility will have initial production of around 100,000 cars per year and be completed by 2018. The company has not said which products will be built in the U.S.
Edmunds says: Shoppers should be aware that they're going to have lots of competition when it comes to getting their hands on the top-of-the-line Volvo XC90.