For immediate release
TORONTO (January 16, 2006) – When the second generation C70 hardtop convertible goes on sale later this Spring, it will offer audiophiles Volvo Car Corporation’s most advanced and powerful audio system in company history.
The optional Premium Sound system will include a six disc CD changer, 12 speakers from Danish manufacturer Dynaudio, an Alpine digital class D amplifier and Dolby Pro Logic II Surround Sound technology. Customers will be able to further enhance their audio experience with optional dual subwoofers. Total power output of the audio system will be a substantial 910 Watts. Further, the sound is automatically adjusted to deliver consistent sound quality regardless of whether the roof is up, down or how fast the car is traveling.
Speakers from Danish Dynaudio
In developing the Premium Sound audio system for the first generation C70, the first step was for Volvo Cars to find the best possible speakers.
Dynaudio is one of the world’s foremost developers and producers of speaker systems for both home use and professional studios. England’s BBC is among the companies that now exclusively use Dynaudio as speakers. As well, Dynaudio offered the company a range of speakers that best met the audio objectives for the C70. Following the 1997 launch of the C70, Volvo began offering Dynaudio speakers in the last generation S70, the previous generation V70 and in 2002 with the S80.
According to Dynaudio, the key to their success is producing their own drivers, with the aid of advanced technology and an uncompromising choice of materials.
“At Dynaudio, we have never felt that there has been room for compromises,” says Wilfried Ehrenholz, Dynaudio’s founder and owner. “And our customers are evidently prepared to pay for high-class technology.”
“When we set out to build the audio system for the first C70 model, it was natural for us to contact Dynaudio,” says Hans Lahti, a technical specialist in the Audio department at Volvo Cars. “But since Dynaudio was an untested supplier to the automotive industry at the time, we compared them with other loudspeaker manufacturers. It soon became evident that the Danish speakers were by far the best.”
Building the car around the loudspeakers
Thanks to Dynaudio’s superb basic design and high build quality, the C70’s designers felt they were the best choice for the Premium Sound system.
“The task confronting our designers was for the first time, and I say this with some exaggeration, to build a car around the loudspeakers instead of integrating loudspeakers into an existing car,” says Lahti. “And the strategy was for our best sound system, Premium Sound, to be marketed as a system from Volvo with loudspeakers from Dynaudio.”
“Volvo was the first car manufacturer to see the potential in a genuine Premium Sound system,” says Wilfried Ehrenholz at Dynaudio. “And we soon realized that our companies shared the passion for quality and perfection. This also formed the basis for more long-term collaboration, which for Dynaudio has contributed to deeper knowledge of sound in a car and also to rapid growth. This, in turn, has resulted in the advantages of economies of scale and increased possibilities for investing in continued development and focusing on quality.”
Efficient class D amplifier
In order to further improve the company’s audio systems, Volvo Cars revisited its relationship with well known audio specialist Alpine, who recently introduced a new digital class D amplifier. The first car to use this new technology will be the second generation Volvo C70. The advantages with a class D amplifier are low current consumption combined with a high degree of efficiency while being more compact and developing less heat than an analogue amplifier. All critical characteristics when an amplifier is to be used in a car.
Sound quality before features
Collaboration with a prominent supplier is an important element in the development of Volvo’s sound systems. However, Volvo is responsible for setting the requirements and for the adaptation to the cabin of a car. And the important thing is the way in which sound is perceived in the car.
“It is quite evident that we prioritize sound quality,” says Lahti. “Some manufacturers offer a greater number of technical features and the possibility of making more advanced settings, but we feel that anyone should be able to use the audio system and get the most out of it.”
Therefore, many functions are fully automatic in Volvo’s audio systems, such as the loudness control and regulating volume and bass in relation to the car’s speed. In the new Volvo C70 hardtop convertible, sound is also regulated automatically when the top is up or down.
“It is a matter of making things easy and convenient for the driver,” says Lex Kerssemakers. “For this reason, we have also designed our sound systems with large controls, an easy-to-read display, and a logical interface. And this is particularly important for Volvo, because ease-of-use also contributes to driving safety.”
Volvo Cars of Canada Corp. is part of the Volvo Car Corporation of Göteborg, Sweden. The company provides marketing, sales, parts, service, technology and training support to the 43 Volvo automobile retailers across the country. The company’s product range includes the flagship S80 luxury sedan, the versatile V70 wagon, the S60 sports sedan, the compact and sporty S40 and V50, and an XC-line of vehicles that includes the rugged XC70 and the award-winning XC90 sport utility vehicle. For 2006, the company is proud to introduce the second-generation C70 convertible with a new retractable three piece hardtop.
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