CMA platform side view with text

Volvo has released details of its new Compact Modular Architecture (CMA), a smaller version of the Scalable Product Architecture (SPA) underpinning the new XC90 (and the upcoming S90). The new platform will form the lower end of a two-pronged strategy to eliminate Gothenburg’s dependence on Ford underpinnings – in this instance, the Focus‘ Global C platform, used on the current V40.

Being modular in nature (and name), cars built on CMA will share components and technology with their larger brethren based on SPA, including powertrains as well as infotainment, climate control, data network and, most importantly, safety systems. The new platform has also been designed with electrification already in mind, with a T5 Twin Engine plug-in hybrid variant designed exclusively for it, mirroring the SPA’s T8.

“The flexibility of CMA liberates Volvo’s engineers and designers, allowing them to devise and introduce a wide range of new and alluring features whilst at the same time improving drivability, offering world-class safety features and connected car technologies,” said senior vice president of research and development Dr Peter Martens.

Together with SPA, CMA is key to Volvo’s product renewal and growth plan, including the replacement of all its models within the next four years – starting with the XC90 – and expanding its annual volume to 800,000 units. The new platform’s ability to spawn multiple models is said to have the potential to increase economies of scale and streamline the company’s manufacturing process.

“Apart from offering all the benefits and features of a larger premium car, such as the industry-leading safety, powertrain and infotainment technologies, CMA will deliver a true and distinctive Volvo driving and ownership experience setting it apart from others in this growing premium segment,” said senior vice president of sales marketing and customer service Björn Annwall.

Reportedly developed in conjunction with parent company Geely, CMA will see its debut as the underpinnings of a new compact model coming in 2017. This will likely be a new C-segment crossover – rumoured to be called the XC40 – to battle the likes of the BMW X1, Audi Q3 and Mercedes-Benz GLA, before the next V40 is slated to go into production sometime in 2019.