What is naughty?

Volvo wants you to think that they are.

It’s a classic case of re-branding. For decades, they have been known as the safety leader. They were the first on the market to have airbags (maybe). But now they want to grab your attention and say, “We’re not boring!”

They have had their less-boring side for a while. I drove a 1995 850 T5R with a friend (who then worked for a Volvo dealer). We had massive fun. Somewhere deep in my basement is a video of that speedometer screaming toward a speed maybe a bit higher than the legal limit.

Interestingly, their campaign still focuses on safety. Their precept is that you can move a lot closer to the edge — and still be safe.

Will their “naughty” re-branding work? Time will tell.

Lest you think I am obsessed with Volvos, I really do like Hondas and BMWs better. And I thank Volvo for the great photo of their newest “naughty” car — the S60. I would like to drive one.

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