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The Volvo Concept Estate garnered Autoblog's Editors' Choice award as our team's favorite reveal at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show earlier this month for its sleek take on Scandinavian design, and now it looks like we might actually see the sleek wagon in production. Volvo is reportedly considering using the concept as the basis for a replacement for the V70 wagon, dubbing the new model V90.
It's rumored to be part of the Swedish brand's plan to launch a new range of 90-series vehicles. In addition to the more luxury-oriented wagon, the family of models includes the XC90 that is expected to debut later this year. According to MotorAuthority, Volvo is also considering using the same version of its Scalable Product Architecture that underpins the crossover to create a range-topping S90 sedan to replace the S80. Assuming it's a success, a C90 coupe is even a possibility. All of these models would be outfitted with the company's Drive-E four-cylinder engine family, which includes hybrids and plug-in hybrids.
The Swedish automaker is also looking downmarket with help from owner Geely in China with replacement 40-series models. According to MotorAuthority, the duo's rumored small car platform will be used to create an updated V40 wagon, C40 hatchback (a C30 successor), as well as an XC40 compact crossover.
The Volvo XC90 was a big step for the Swedish automaker in 2003, but the midsize crossover has changed very little since its introduction. All that's about to change as Volvo starts its initial development on the 2015 XC90, which we see for the first time in these spy shots showing a cobbled-together XC70.
Like the current XC90, the next-generation model will be both longer and wider than the XC70 - judging by the modifications made to this mule's body - which will continue to allow Volvo's flagship crossover and provide three rows of seating. The next XC90 will ride on a new platform that will eventually make up around two-thirds of all Volvo sales, called the Scalable Product Architecture (SPA).
Our shooter managed to find out the registration number for this mule, which indicated that it was powered by a five-cylinder diesel, but we expect the automaker to start stepping away from its current powertrains with a big push toward smaller engines courtesy of the new Volvo Engine Architecture (VEA). Rumor has it that the future engine lineup for the XC90 will rely heavily on turbocharged four-cylinder engines and eight-speed automatic transmissions, which will likely eliminate or lessen some of the current mills available like a straight-six or V8.
We all know how safe Volvo cars are, but a European junkyard has decided to put it to the test by crashing, jumping and rolling the life out of an 850 wagon. While government tests use automated systems to crash new cars, the guys in this video do so with a driver behind the wheel. Aside from what looks like a safety harness and roll bar for the driver, it seems like this car is otherwise bone stock.
Not wanting to spoil the fun for you, we'll just point out that at the start of the video, our hero car looks pretty flawless, and by the end, well, let's just say the Craigslist ad for the car would say "needs some body work." Check out the video below to watch some stunts that even the Duke Boys might shy away from.