Volvo is an internationally recognised car manufacturing brand that builds theircompanies reputation around the safety and economically friendly aspects of their vehicleswhich usually attracts the interest of families and people who look for a car that should besafe above anything else ( This has been seen with one oftheir latest models the Volvo XC60 which has been recorded as one of the safest cars on themarket scoring nearly 100% on multiple safety tests that have been performed on the vehicle(Hussain, 2018). Volvo is a Swedish car brand with dealerships that can be found all aroundthe world moreover, they own many large manufacturing companies in many countries suchas Sweden and China (“Volvo car group”, 2016).Target marketVolvo focuses on marketing to families or couples intending to start families of theirown (Schmidhauser, 2018). Individuals who find it important to put safety first are morelikely to purchase Volvo’s (, 2018). Their intention is to be a lifetime brandand provide what families value. Households and employees are also marketed to due to thefact that such consumers are in the middle class and skilled working class. Due to Volvobeing a relatively small brand they do not target the masses, instead they focus on urbanconsumers who will best represent their aspirations. Volvo does, however, intend to expandits market (, 2018). Urban people conform to time and seasons and thisis good for Volvo because they also adapt to what is needed for the specific time. Volvoseeks to attract individuals who are explorative, energetic and who are excited by newchallenges. Volvo appreciates such customers because they share the same values Volvodoes. Challenge seeking behaviour is an example of this (, 2018).Values demanded by target marketEnvironmental concern is a value of importance to Volvo and this value is believed tobe shared by their customers. Sustainability has also been emphasised upon because Volvoacknowledges the state of the environment, health and economic position as well as otherfactors others overlook. Safety is also of great concern to customers and the company, withmore automobiles on roads and many other dangers, safety is of utmost importance in orderto put Volvo users at ease (, 2018). Volvo prides itself on the Quality of theircars (, 2018). Due to their position as somewhat of a premium brand qualityis what consumers value and expect from the Volvo experience. Money is also valued by thetarget market as they are mostly employees and families who purchase vehicles as aninvestment or personal asset that will be with them as they take on challenges ahead(, 2018).PositioningA product’s positioning in the market is the perception and impressions consumershave about the product. A company can highlight important attributes about its product toinfluence its perception. Volvo markets itself from the point of safety and this forms part oftheir brand vision (Volvo, n.d.). They show the public the lengths the company goes throughto ensure superior safety to the consumers. Many Volvo adverts show the rigorous testingthey put their cars through in the name of research to improve safety. Often times destroyingthe car completely. Volvo’s strive for being the safest car paid off in 2017 where the VolvoXC60 was awarded the NCAP's Safest Car (Padeanu, 2018). The conceptual map belowshows price versus safety ratings of the XC60 and 3 of its competitors. The BMW X3 has aprice of R719 706* (New BMW X3 Specs ; Prices in South Africa, n.d.) and an NCAP ratingof 93%**, the Audi Q5 has a price of R698 000* (Audi Q5 (2017) Specs ; Price, n.d.) andan NCAP safety rating of 93%**, the Land Rover Discovery Sport has a price of R743 066*(New Land Rover Discovery Sport Specs ; Prices in South Africa, n.d.) and an NCAP safetyrating of 90%** and the Volvo XC60 has a price of R693 570* (New Volvo XC60 Specs ;Prices in South Africa, n.d.) and an NCAP safety rating of 98%**.* All prices quoted are for base models.** NCAP safety ratings for driver only. (euroncap, n.d)DifferentiationThe Volvo XC60 Has been awarded the best performing large off-road vehicle andhas been praised for being the best overall performing car of 2017 in the glorified EuroNCAP 2017 best in class safety wards (Times of Malta, 2018). The XC60 is currentlydominating the market of large off-road class vehicles and scored a nearly perfect safetyscore of 95 percent with their closest competitor scoring a 75 percent, 20 percent less than theVolvo XC60 which supports Volvo’s positioning as the leaders in automotive safety (Timesof Malta, 2018). The Volvo XC60 released at the same time as the new BMW X3 and areboth selling at similar prices, so what makes the Volvo XC60 different from the BMW X3?The Volvo XC60 and the BMW X3 are very similar in certain aspects for example price,speed and power however the Volvo XC60 is a car meant to travel both on and off road werethe BMW X3 is only meant to be an on-road vehicle (Ghalla, 2018). Furthermore, the VolvoXC60 focuses on safety and comes equipped with all the latest technology designed to keepthe driver, their passengers and all the cars and pedestrians on the road safe (Khong, 2018).Marketing mixProductVolvo’s XC60 was originally introduced in 2008 making that first-generation model.This was later followed by the second-generation model which was released in 2017 (VolvoCar, 2018). The XC60 is a 5-door SUV which can be front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive.Martin Magnussen who is a safety engineer for Volvo quoted ;A driver can get distracted,but the system doesn’t.", this is to suggest how the safe the cars onboard safety system iswhich includes technology such as sensing pedestrians and cyclists and preparing the car tobreak or breaking on its own to avoid sudden impact (Volvo, 2018). The car includes apremium sound system manufactured by Harman Kardon, an on-board navigation system aswell as Sensus, the best in class infotainment system that includes a voice activation systemwhich only requires the driver to speak to perform several commands such as changingsongs, sending messages or getting directions (Volvo, 2018). The second generation of theXC60’s engines are all 2.0 litre and come in Petrol, Diesel as well as hybrid. The XC60comes with a 5 year / 100 000km service plan (Volvo, 2018).PriceThe XC60’s starting price begins at R649 400 which is Vat inclusive (Volvo, 2018).Volvo offers many extras for the XC60 that can be customised to the needs of the customerand added separately to tailor for each customer personally (Volvocars, 2018). Volvo cancharge this price due to its reputation for quality, safety as well as the technology that itcomes up with. The bottom of the range model for the XC60 is the XC60 T5 GeartronicMomentum which costs R649 400 which is followed by the XC60 T5 Geartronic Inscriptionwhich costs R661 418. The sports version of the XC60 is then introduced and begins at R681570 for the XC60 T5 Geartronic R-design. The top of the range XC60 is the XC60 T6Geartronic AWD R-design which is sold at a price of R777 126 (Volvo Retail Price List,2018).PromotionVolvo’s XC60 television advert from 2017 promotes the safety of the XC60 bydepicting a real-life situation where the driver takes her eyes off of the road for a split secondand in that second a young girl begins to cross the street and as a result of the driver gettingdistracted, the XC60 senses an incoming sudden impact and breaks automatically to avoidand accident with the little girl (Volvo, 2017).  Volvo also partnered with the band SwedishHouse Mafia to promote the XC60, Swedish House Mafia were known for their electronicdance genre and typically had a young audience, this promotion strategy from Volvo couldpossibly have been to help connect with a younger target market, as well as help promote theidea of a safe car being cool by using the image of Swedish House Mafia. Volvo’s advert forthe R-design XC60 depicts the car as being in a tough and harsh environment but the car stillstands out and the caption “command the extreme” places the car in a light of being incontrol, this promotes the cars ability to perform in tough environments as well as the safetyof the car at the same time.  Volvo also used the 2009 film The Twilight Saga: New Moon topromote the XC60 this included an online contest to give away models identical to the onedriven by lead character Edward Cullen (What drives Edward Cullen May Soon Drive You,2009).PlaceThe first series of the XC60 was developed in 3 different countries Belgium in Ghent,China in Chengdu and Malaysia in Shah Alam, however production of the first series endedin 2017. As of December 2016, Volvo Cars had over 31 000 employees worldwide. VolvoCars head office, product development, marketing and administration functions are inGothenburg in Sweden. Volvo Cars head office for China is in Shanghai. The company’smain car production plants are in Gothenburg, Ghent in Belgium and Chengdu. Engines aremanufactured in Skövde in Sweden and Zhangjiakou in China while finally body componentsin manufactured in Olofström Sweden (Volvo Car Group, 2018).


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