Volvo Construction Equipment (Volvo CE) is switching to shorter and less complicated product names, representing its much wider ambition to look beyond the product to a more holistic site overview. Designed to fit more closely with the brand’s premium look and feel, this new design philosophy and designation policy has already won the prestigious 2020 Red Dot Product Design Award.
Rolling out in September, new and updated Volvo branded products will now be tagged with just the product type and size on its side – and nothing else. All other product details, such as model series and model variant, will continue to be found on the specifications, brochure or PIN plate, ensuring customers will see no change in how they buy service or order parts for their products.
The real motivation behind this change is to bring the product’s branding in line with the company’s minimalist Scandinavian heritage and long-standing desire for a clean, clear and boundless human-centric design.
CLARITY IN FUNCTION AND DESIGN
Gustavo Guerra, Design Director for Volvo CE, says, “We always strive for an honest and simple design that still emulates the smart power of our products. But we found that our brand designation did not suit the purposeful and progressive quality of our products. This new move is designed to bring more confidence and clarity not just to the operator but to everyone out on the jobsite – which is what we mean by boundless design.”
Modern construction sites are now much less focused on just the product and more focused on the construction site as a whole. With this updated product designation, Volvo CE aims to create a clearer line of communication for all parties, from the operator out on the job site right through to the back-office function. A rise in new technologies also brings with it a necessary increase in inter-generational product updates, so eliminating the need to change the product name for every update, no matter how big or small, ensures the branding stays clean, simple and purposeful.
“We are at a crossroads where new and traditional ways of working are coming together,” says Gustavo. “As developments in electric, autonomous and connected technologies grow side-by-side with our continued need for diesel equipment, we will soon see the level of product updates also growing exponentially. It’s a time of change for the industry and our branding structure should reflect that too.”
THE FIRST MODELS LAUNCHED WITH NEW DESIGNATION
Whether it is a modification to the cab, operator controls, product frame or technical function, each edit will no longer carry with it long and cumbersome model names when the update is brought to the market. Effectively this means removing the revision status and product specification from the external visual identity and leaving just the product abbreviation and product size. All technical details are communicated as normal on PIN plates and marketing materials. The first models launched with the new designation policy are the first two Electric models of ECR25 and L25 and the ECR58 generation F – which recently won the prestigious Red Dot Award for product design. The award is the most globally recognized mark for industrial design quality. In their statement, the jury said that they were “impressed by the balanced construction that incorporated not only the cabin but also the exterior and the user experience.”
This new design philosophy will have minimal impact on the way customers buy their products, order parts or take them in for servicing. In exactly the same way as today, customers will still be able to look to the specifications on the PIN plate in order to find the detailed configurations required for aftermarket services, parts ordering or repairs.
The change is being introduced on all new and updated models during a staged roll-out from this year forward, set to take until around 2025.
“This is not just a renaming initiative,” says Gustavo. “This is our design philosophy, a principle that guides us through the creation of the next generation of construction products. A key part of our role is to help our customers navigate the shifting digital landscape, and offer clear and open communication to better manage these times of change.”