Volvojo is a place where I get to geek out about Swedish car news and history online. I also get to do fun things like write, take photos, and make/edit videos about a topic that I am genuinely enthusiastic about. It’s a fun hobby for me, and one that I hope you’ll enjoy being a part of, as well.
As far as hobbies go, I have to admit that it’s a very convenient one– that’s because reading, writing, and knowing all about Volvo Cars directly benefits my “real job” selling cars at the Autobarn Volvo of Oak Park outside of Chicago. I wasn’t always a sales man, though. In fact, that came rather recently.
Before I was “Volvojo”, I spent several years tuning Mercedes-Benz V12s and working with companies to develop advanced, standalone ECU solutions for the Nissan R35, Lamborghini/Audi V10, and Porsche Turbo platforms, too. I also had the honor of working for Warren Mosler, and was part of a team that developed one of the first cars completely designed in CAD– when it wasn’t winning races, that is.
Why Love Volvo Cars?
One of the questions I often get when people find out about the Lamborghinis and Porsches and other sporty, go-fast cars I used to work with is, “Why Volvo?” I give a lot of answers- some long, some short- but the best answer is this: we share the same values.
Cars are driven by people – the guiding principle behind everything we make at Volvo, therefore, is and must remain: safety.
I value life. I value my wife’s life, my kids’ lives, my friends’ lives– I value your life, even though I’ve probably never met you. That’s why Volvo speaks to me, then. It is a company that values life, and its culture has been built around that idea. And, for Volvo, it’s not just pretty talk and PR spin.
In 1959, Volvo engineer Nils Bohlin developed and patented the three-point retractable safety belt. The design would save thousands of lives when it was introduced to Volvo Cars, but that wasn’t enough. Volvo, realizing that it could save the lives of millions, gave its technology away for free– and you would be hard-pressed to find a car today that didn’t make use of Volvo’s revolutionary seat belt.
Volvo Safety Belt | Since 1959
Volvo made a choice to put people ahead of profits when it gave away that patent. And, critically, the company has continued to behave in a conscious, progressive manner that often puts life over money. In addition to the seat belt, Volvo pioneered the collapsible steering wheel, shatter proof safety glass, and rear-facing child seats back in the 1960s, helping to save many more lives in the process.
Sustainability is another place where my personal values and Volvo Cars’ intersect. Volvo is committed to reducing its carbon footprint by ensuring that all of its manufacturing facilities are carbon neutral by the end of the decade. The company has also committed to electrifying all of its new models, starting in 2019, and to eliminate single use plastics from its factories, offices, and events.
All of those things– those facts- speak to what Volvo is. So, back to the original question that is being asked here. Why love Volvo? What’s not to love?
Why Volvo of Oak Park?
As an Oak Park resident, I first came to Volvo of Oak Park as a service customer. Then, later, my wife bought the Volvo XC70 she’s still driving today. While it was in service, I became friends with the service manager, Marc, and my advisor, Rob. They were- and are!- genuinely good guys and excellent ambassadors for Volvo. After knowing them a few years and talking through some family health issues over a cup of coffee one day, Marc suggested I apply for a position– and I’m glad I did!
What I’ve found here at the Autobarn Volvo of Oak Park is a group of genuine car enthusiasts with backgrounds in history, theater, hair styling, and even the clergy! Time and again, I’ve built genuine friendships with customers based on our common interest in things as obscure as model railroads. It’s more than that, though. The best feeling I’ve ever had at any retail job has been seeing so many customers rush in and give me a hug as soon as they walk in.
It’s that kind of place. That was true during my years in the service department, and it’s just as true now that I’ve moved up into sales. So, if you’re looking for a new or used Volvo, I think you owe it to yourself to check out the Autobarn. It really does feel like a different kind of place.
Original content from Volvojo.