The ‘M’ moniker may bring images of high-performance BMWs to enthusiasts’ minds, but it now also refers to Volvo’s new mobility brand, which is simply called M. The automaker recently stated that it was launching an app-based car-sharing service in Sweden that would spread to the United States by 2019.
Other automakers like BMW, Daimler, and Cadillac have car-sharing programs. But Volvo wants M to stand out by using proprietary technology to get a better understanding of what users need. The tech, according to the automaker, will help M learn about its users’ preferences, needs, and habits. Like other automakers, Volvo will provide “on-demand access” to vehicles and services via a smartphone application. Volvo didn’t state what cars or services it would be offering through M.
“We’re focused on the way people use the cars they own, which sets us apart,” said Bodil Eriksson, CEO of Volvo Car Mobility. “We aim to provide a real alternative to that experience. It should enable us to live life to our terms, getting things done and maximizing precious time. We see the opportunity to offer a premium experience.”
Volvo didn’t provide a lot more information on M or what else it plans to do to stick out in a growing segment. M isn’t the automaker’s first car-sharing program, though, as Volvo has operated Sunfleet for roughly 20 years. Sunfleet is one of the largest car-sharing services in Sweden and has a fleet of 1,700 cars. The pre-existing car-sharing company will be integrated into M.
The plan to launch M is part of Volvo’s strategy to be more than just a car company. M, as Volvo puts it, will help the automaker evolve to become a “direct-to-consumer services provider,” which follows its “Freedom to Move” mission. The latter is what drove Volvo to launch Care by Volvo.