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Volvo Drops Its Top

Volvo has released the first official photos of its second generation C70 that will make its official debut at the 2005 Frankfurt Motor Show.

Volvo has released the first official photos of its second generation C70 that will make its official debut at the 2005 Frankfurt Motor Show. Unlike the original C70, which came as either a coupe or convertible, the new car is both. Its retractable hardtop makes it possible to drive the car year-round with little concern for the weather.

The C70 employs a door-mounted inflatable curtain airbag that inflates upward on deployment. This gives it the same coverage as a conventional unit that drops down from the headliner, and works when the roof is lowered. It was engineered to be stiffer than a conventional design so that it would offer greater head protection in a side impact, and deflates more slowly to provide additional protection should the car roll over.

Volvo claims the C70's torsional rigidity is twice that of the previous convertible, and this number increases an additional 10% to 15% with the top up. For the U.S. market, the C70 will be powered by a turbocharged 2.5-liter inline five-cylinder engine producing 218 hp and 236 lb-ft torque.

This is the first vehicle to be developed and built by Pininfarina Sverige AB—a joint venture company formed in 2003 by Pininfarina and Volvo and based in Uddevalla, Sweden. The new joint venture company takes the place of AutoNova, a cooperative effort between Volvo and TWR Group that was formed to build the first generation C70 at the Uddevalla plant. Pininfarina Sverige AB employs more than 600 people, and is responsible for all of the plant operations including project management, process engineering, prototyping, and testing. Pininfarina is the majority owner, and the top management is split between Pininfarina and Volvo executives.