If you’ve always thought of Volvo as boxy, plain and unexciting, all that’s about to change as the brand unveiled its new concept vehicles.

Called the 40 series, these two models show the direction Volvo is taking as it launches its global small car campaign.

Built around Volvo’s new Compact Modular Architecture (CMA) which was created specifically for smaller cars, the two concept vehicles come in sedan and crossover form.

Volvo Concept 40.1

“Each member of our product family has its own distinct character, just like the members of a real family. CMA has helped us to capture something special, something youthful in our new concept cars. They have an energy, a disruptive and engaging urban character that makes them stand out amongst the crowd. This is the flavour of small Volvos to come,” said Thomas Ingenlath, Senior Vice President, Design, at Volvo Car Group.

Volvo plans for these concepts to come with a pure battery electric vehicle option and also with a Twin Engine plug-in hybrid powertrain in order for the marquee to meet its goal of putting electric propulsion trims for its entire portfolio. Volvo aims to sell up to 1 million electric vehicles by 2025.

Volvo Concept 40.2

“By taking a modular approach to both vehicle architecture and powertrain development we have succeeded in leap-frogging many of the players in the premium segment. Our new battery electric powertrain variant opens yet another exciting chapter in the unfolding Volvo story,” said Dr Peter Mertens, Senior Vice President Research & Development.

“The new 40 series cars have the potential to improve our market penetration in an important growing segment. An electric powertrain program including both a new compact Twin Engine plug-in hybrid as well as a pure electric car are central to the CMA architecture,” said Håkan Samuelsson, president and chief executive.

The 40 series is expected to go into production in 2017.