"In every Volvo since 1927, the car is based on one line running right through it from front to back. It runs in a positive arc right through the car from front lamp to rear lamp.
"On top of that, there are now usually three side windows and surrounding that a vertical surface, which we call the Volvo Bridge. That is the essence of every Volvo. It's a convex line creating visual tension in all our cars.
"If you look at the front of our new cars, we have reintroduced a strong V-shape. It first saw the light of day in older Volvos - the PV and the Amazon. Similarly, the Volvo grille has always been vertical.
"When we introduced the 850, people said to me, 'I can see it's a Volvo, but I don't know why.' It's not a matter of being retro because then you repeat yourself. What we are trying to do is create an almost subconscious recognition of our product."