• 2014 Volvo XC90 will be redesigned
  • Volvo to share new platform among models
  • SUV will get new 4-cylinder engines

Volvo will launch an all-new version of its popular XC90 midsize luxury SUV in 2014. The automaker recently confirmed plans for the revised model, which is scheduled to go on sale towards the end of 2014. Volvo also announced upcoming changes to its engines and platforms.

According to Volvo, the new XC90 will be the first model built using its new Scalable Product Architecture. The platform will adapt to many new models of varying sizes. That way, Volvo can finally cut ties with Ford, which previously owned the Swedish automaker. Many Volvo models still share parts with Fords.

As for the new XC90, Volvo is tight-lipped on details. While its release date is less than two years away, that's a long time for car shoppers who may be weary of the XC90's aging design. The current model debuted for the 2003 model year.

While it's hard to guess exactly where Volvo will take its next XC90, several sketches shown last year may provide some insight. Those drawings featured an angular, futuristic SUV with widely flared fenders. But they retain the XC90's tall rear taillights and trademark shoulder line running down both sides.

In addition to new styling, the new XC90 is also likely to use new engines. That's because Volvo says it's developing a new family of 4-cylinder engines with turbocharging and direct injection. Those two features improve performance and fuel economy, making us think they'll likely show up in other upcoming Volvo models, too.

If the XC90 does get a 4-cylinder, it will mark a radical departure from today's model. While the current XC90 has used 5-, 6-, and 8-cylinder motors, it's never offered a 4-cylinder. A 240-horsepower 3.2-liter 6-cylinder is the only option in the 2013 XC90.

We expect to know more about the next-gen XC90 in the coming year. In the meantime, shoppers can still buy the current model, which received a significant refresh in 2011. Volvo also offers the smaller XC60 crossover, which debuted for the 2009 model year.

What it means to you: Shoppers considering the popular XC90 might want to consider a 2-year lease -- which would expire just about the time an all-new Volvo XC90 arrives.

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Jeffrey Archer is fortunate to have turned a passion for cars into a career. His wide-ranging automotive experience includes work for automakers and dealers in addition to covering the news. When not writing, he spends his time searching for unique cars on AutoTrader.com.

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