The biggest all-new product debut for Volvo Cars in half a decade will have standard safety equipment that goes "beyond that of any Volvo before it," the company's top executive said Wednesday.
The EX90 full-electric premium large crossover will replace the XC90 as Volvo's flagship. It will feature an "invisible shield of safety" that can help reduce accidents that cause serious injuries or death by up to one-fifth, Volvo CEO Jim Rowan said.
To achieve that goal, Volvo is adding a lidar sensor for the first time.
The system, embedded in the EX90's roofline, uses light in the form of a pulsed laser to measure wide areas of space far in front of the vehicle with high precision.
"The difference lidar can make for real-life safety is remarkable," Rowan said on Wednesday. "Our recent research indicates that adding lidar to a car can reduce accidents with severe outcomes by up to 20 percent, and overall crash avoidance can be improved by up to 9 percent."
The lidar technology, which is from Luminar and will become standard equipment in Volvos over time, can detect pedestrians at distance of up to 820 feet even at highway speeds.
"And because it's not reliant on light like a camera, it's watching over you in daylight and at night," Rowan said.
Working together with the lidar in the EX90's road monitoring system will be eight cameras, five radars and 16 ultrasonic sensors.
Volvo released the EX90 name and safety details about the crossover on Wednesday but no exterior or interior photos, which will be part of the vehicle's full reveal on November 9.