Volvo - When Ford Motor Company purchased Volvo's car division in 1999 [Volvo's truck division was not part of the deal], many felt that an important era in Volvo engineering would come to an end. Fortunately, they have been proven wrong. Even more so than GM, Ford has allowed Volvo to exercise significant independence and has adopted Volvo engineering and safety practices to other Ford models quite successfully. Most new Volvo models are Volvo inspired with the U.S. automaker benefiting by the sharing of important resources. One exception is Volvo's new CX50 SUV which will be sharing the same platform as the Land Rover Freelander and the Ford Mondeo, but beyond that the rest of the vehicle is all Volvo engineering. Volvo's influence on Ford has extended to the new Ford Five Hundred sedan, which borrowed Volvo's front wheel drive chassis because it could be easily converted to an all wheel drive chassis, an important selling point.
In all, both Saab and Volvo have a lot to be proud of. If Ford and GM behave themselves and give the two automakers wide latitude, all the cars within the two company's folds are certain to benefit. Only time will tell if this proves out.
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