Volvo Claims Chinese-Built Cars Are Higher Quality Than European Ones

Not that long ago, the Chinese built nothing but cheap and poorly made vehicles. Well, things have changed. So much so, that Volvo says the vehicles it builds in the People’s Republic are actually superior in quality than those it makes in Europe.

During an interview with Australia’s Go Auto, Volvo senior vice-president of design Robin Page admitted that some were concerned about the Swedish marque’s decision to build many of its vehicles in China.

“What we’re finding is that the quality of the cars are actually better in China than they are in Europe. Everyone was worried about quality, but as soon as they started the quality was even higher than in Europe,” Page commented.

Various other automakers are turning to Chinese factories

According to Page, Geely’s Chinese factories produce such high-quality vehicles because they rely less on automation and have tighter tolerances.

“To be honest with you, if you talk to the (European) manufacturing guys, they’ve put so much automation into the system, you haven’t got that manual adjust. They’ve got more people on it, less automation, which actually gives you that ability to get tighter on the tolerances … and make finer adjustments.

“It’s not a massive difference, but if you do scores-to-scores and averages, China’s pretty damn good, so we’re not so worried about that now,” Page added.

Volvo started exporting Chinese-built vehicles around the world in 2014 with the previous-generation, long-wheelbase S60. Additionally, the company moved production of its range-topping S90 sedan from Sweden to China at the end of 2016. Other vehicles from Geely, including various electric Volvos and Lynk & Co models, will be built in, and exported from, China, too.

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  • Vassilis

    Interesting…

    • Autoexperte

      the factories in China are new, the European ones old, that´s the reason

      • dumblikeyou2

        So then that means a brand new European car will always be an old European car because it rolled off an old European assembly line. Jesus Christ, that’s brilliant.

        • Autoexperte

          the factories with the highest level of automation are in China

          • Matt

            Then why did Volvo say their Chinese plant has LESS automation than their European plants?

          • Merc1

            You clearly don’t have any clue about what you’re talking about.

            Just wow.

            M

          • Autoexperte

            the factories in China are new, ok the Volvo factories in China have less automation, but they are new, consequently all machines and instruments are new

      • ZYGIUS

        Yes screwdrivers are from the 60s, automatic assembling robots from the 70s, adjusted from 240 :)) :)))

  • Six_Tymes

    I wouldn’t doubt it, they got their standards up in the past few years. But took them long enough. “Money money money…”

  • RS6 Performance Wagon Lover

    Thankfully, the V90 production remains in Europe……

  • europeon

    Nothing new, it’s all in the quality control.
    For decades, almost every high end and luxury product was manufactured in China by the same workers and (very often) on the same assembly lines the cheap knockoffs are build, with the only difference being the insanely strict quality control western companies demand.

  • Brabusbus

    Everything is made in China, even your fancy Iphone X is the same case. And all we know it’s because the production cost is much cheaper.

    • a_f_a

      Not just the cost (there are countries with cheaper labour cost). Mainly is the insane supply chain and hands-on expertise accumulated the past decades from production engineering, tooling, assembly etc.
      Labour cost is just a part of the overall new-product-development process/plan

  • Dr Strangefingger

    Higher quality than the EU? No surprise there.

    • Silimarina

      At least are better than US pos.
      Still being lame by upvoting yourself…no surprise there

      • Dr Strangefingger

        I like it that you pay attention to me. And that it upsets you when i up vote…enough that you need to post about it. We’re a bit like mates at this point.

        Enjoy your evening.

  • There’s no world where low paid workers have higher tolerances than automated machines. That doesn’t even make sense! This is just cost cutting, plain and simple, and blowing smoke to justify it.

  • Maricaibo

    Judging from the ‘quality’ of the last cigarette lighter I bought, made in China, I am not having any of this.

    • Despite that, China has a very strong and ancient history of fine craftsmanship…then there’s that…

      • brn

        They also have a very strong history of making crap.

        • and so is the US…remember our crap autos from 1970-2000?

          • brn

            I also remember a lot of quality vehicles during that period too.

    • Marty

      Because that cigarette lighter is made on the same Geely factory and you payed premium for it? That sounds odd.

    • a_f_a

      However, the computer from which you posted this comment, most likely is reliable, right?
      It depends how much did you pay and where did you get this lighter from.

  • Makes sense…even if the quality was the same as Europe, the labor costs are much lower, advantage China…however, the production managers in China are probably very tough on workers with QC, so I believe it…

  • Jarosław Kotowicz

    So basically Volvo is ready to do everything to defend their controversial decision. Everything lays in quality control. Automation has always tighter tolerance than human.

  • WHAT ELSE ARE THEY GOING TO SAY?
    MAYBE BECAUSE IT’S A COMMUNIST COUNTRY IS WHY PEOPLE DON’T WANT TO BUY.

  • ToniCipriani ✓pǝᴉɟᴉɹǝʌ

    Not just Volvo, even the Chinese-built Buick Envision is reportedly better built than the other American-built Buicks.

  • BlackPegasus

    welp, my Apple products are mostly made in China so….. 😗

    • Dr Strangefingger

      By toddlers?

  • smartacus

    Saying anything against Europe is
    racism against muslims and their
    Eurabian car manufacturing jobs.

    • Silimarina

      And saying anything against US will make the orange face joke of a president start to threaten you on twitter

      • Dr Strangefingger

        You just sound lime a very unhappy sad person in general. That’s too bad.

        • smartacus

          that kid was another snowflake who can’t accept Hillarity suffers incontinence
          https://lenbilen.files.wordpress.com/2016/08/depend.jpg

          • Silimarina

            Again with the snowflake.Do you republicans know any other words for someone that thinks your president is a joke?I think you are the snowflake, because you can’t take criticism for your failed president.

        • Silimarina

          Says the guy that has to leave a negative comment on every Tesla article

          • Dr Strangefingger

            Your obsession with me is getting the best of you. Although flattering to me… sad for you as I’m nothing more than simple comments in the form of sentences on the random interwebs to you. Perhaps your time could be spent in a more positive and uplifting way, rather than trying to get even with those that possess opinions you don’t agree with, i.e., grow up and deal with it. Or I suppose you could spend the rest of your life being offended by everything and everyone.

            Your choice mate.

  • GoofyGotKilos

    If you make crappy shit for long enough I’m sure you would eventually arrive at making quality shit.

  • Marty

    It’s so ignorant to think that Chinese factories produce cheap crap because they don’t know how to produce high quality.

    They produce the quality that the customers are ready to pay for. If you want cheap crap, they make it for you. If you want premium, they make that.

  • Antonio

    The only one to blame is….. Volvo. They are the one that design the production set up. If the manage to increase build quality, good for them. But don’t blame europe for worst quality. Blame your production process.

  • ZYGIUS

    HA HA 🙂 Nice one Volvo, now keep telling yourself that

  • Sarphogus

    I got a China made CRT TV that is 20+ years old and still running. Not one single service repair. Use it for playing old console games. You got both end of the spectrum in China. They make the best and crappiest product.
    You get what you pay for.

  • Tostik

    Lynks will be built in the Volvo factory in Ghent too. Volvo will soon open it’s factory in South Carolina, and will soon build 120,000 cars/yr. And both Torslanda and Ghent are going full blast. So will Volvo build more cars in China? Yes, but these cars will be sold mostly in China, as demand for Volvos is booming there.

  • LeStori

    If China has it’s way, everything will be made in China.Tthe rest of us will either Kow Tow or become irrelevant. China is run by aTotalitarian government lead by a Dictator for life. That is going to end well for us all…

  • LeStori

    So you buy a company, ship its production to your home country, claim it is better quality and this will make the world a better place. Beggar thy neighbour… brought to you by the Totalitarian China Government and its Dictator for life. If the Volvo you buy is not made in Europe. you are making the world a worse place.

  • Silimarina

    What a load of BS. That’s why a lot of reviews say that the new Volvo cars have lower interior quality than a german car or japanese.

  • I guess if you think about it, Chinese workers are going to be more skilled and reliable than Swedish ones, since all the Swedes are now refugees from Africa / Middle East.

  • Silimarina

    why do you presume that i like Hillary?

    • smartacus

      why do you presume
      i don’t know you do?

      is it because it’s so
      easy for you to hide
      that you are triggered?

      • Silimarina

        you presume to much

        • smartacus

          you presume your
          reasonable doubt
          works on anyone.

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