The 12th edition of the Volvo Ocean Race starts in October. Seven boats will depart from Alicante, Spain, on Oct. 11, 2014 and visit 11 ports on five continents on the way to the final stopover in Gothenburg, Sweden in June 2015. To reach the finish, they’ll race 38,739 nautical miles around the world in the ultimate human challenge.
For Volvo Car Group (Volvo Cars), the 2014-15 Volvo Ocean Race is a natural tie to the global brand strategy, “Designed Around You.” The same human-focused approach to design, safety and technology, along with ongoing efforts to reduce environmental impact, is evident in both the race and in Volvo Cars’ brand development.
“At Volvo Cars, everything we do begins with people, from our commitment to safety to innovation. Through the Volvo Ocean Race we get an excellent opportunity to connect and build relationships with people around the world. The race itself is also an extraordinary human endeavour, requiring passion, focus, dedication, teamwork – the same emotions and traits reflected in the design of our vehicles,” said Håkan Samuelsson, President & CEO Volvo Car Group.
New racing yachts for this edition emphasize the human-centric focus. The Volvo Ocean 65 is radical, high-performance, world-class and tough. The seven-boat Volvo Ocean 65 fleet is one-design – all were built to a single, tightly controlled set of plans. As a result, the emphasis is on the skill, strategy and teamwork of the crews.
The Volvo Ocean Race offers significant business opportunities for Volvo Cars. A pavilion located in each stopover port Race Village, shared by all the Volvo companies, offers the general public and corporate guests insight into the brand and products. The highlight during the 2014-15 race will be the all-new Volvo XC90. The premium SUV will be on display in the pavilions throughout the race. Vehicle technology and safety features will also be showcased with the traveling exhibition, including a Park Assist Pilot demonstration.
Cape Town is the first stop after the boats leave Alicante, and the Race Village will be set up in the V&A Waterfront – entrance is free and it’s a fantastic opportunity for everyone to see the beautiful boats, as well as the all-new Volvo XC90, up close.
The Volvo Ocean Race is a powerful tool to build, enhance and stimulate business relationships. From current and future customers, to dealers, sales partners and media, the stopovers provide a unique setting to interact with various stakeholders. A larger audience is reached through race-specific marketing campaigns, media outreach and digital communication.
Emphasis on Core Values
Volvo Cars’ core values of safety, quality and environmental care are naturally woven into the Volvo Ocean Race. The new Volvo Ocean 65 incorporates a series of innovations that, combined, make a boat not only fast through water, but also capable of withstanding the toughest conditions on the planet. Safety on the wind-powered vessels is also a priority, just as it has been for Volvo Cars since the very first car was manufactured in 1927.
The Volvo Ocean Race receives tremendous media coverage around the world. As the top professional sailors race against each other on high-tech machines across miles of unforgiving ocean, millions of fans will follow the adventure.
Through onboard cameras and sophisticated telecommunications, every detail can be shared on television, computer and mobile device. Hundreds of thousands of people also visit the Race Villages in each host port to watch the action live, learn about the Volvo Cars brand and enjoy entertainment and hospitality programs.
During the 2011-12 race, 1.55 billion people viewed the race on television, and the Race Villages saw 2.9 million visitors combined. Millions more followed the race through digital channels or global media outlets.
Volvo Ocean Race Edition
Volvo Cars is also celebrating the race with another special edition of sailing-inspired cars. The fifth generation Volvo Ocean Race Edition, which includes the Volvo V40, V40 Cross Country, V60 and XC60, was launched at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show.
40 Years of Racing
Now, 40 years after the race began, the extraordinary combination of risk, courage and human endurance continues to fascinate fans and attract new and veteran sailors.
Seven teams have entered to race in the 2014-15 Volvo Ocean Race: Team SCA (Sweden), Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing (United Arab Emirates), Dongfeng Race Team (China), Team Brunel (Netherlands), Team Alvimedica (USA & Turkey), Spanish Team (official team name to be announced), and Team Vestas Wind (Denmark).
Racing begins on October 4, 2014 with the In-Port Race in Alicante, Spain. The first offshore leg gets underway with the start of the first leg on October 11. Teams depart Alicante and sail approximately 6,487 nautical miles to Cape Town, South Africa. The route continues east to Abu Dhabi, UAE; Sanya, China; Auckland, New Zealand; Itajaí, Brazil; Newport, Rhode Island, USA; Lisbon, Portugal; and Lorient, France; before finishing in Volvo’s home – Gothenburg, Sweden.