Interview with Heico Founder, Mr. Holger Hedtke
9tro caught up with Heico’s main man at the 2015 Essen Motor Show to find out more about the tuning programme for the new Volvo XC90.
Volvo has been on a roll these days and with the launch of their all-new XC90, things are definitely looking up for the Swedish car manufacturer. These would also be good news for Volvo-tuner, Heico, a German-based company that specialises in upping the ante for the entire range, be it in performance or aesthetics. 9tro was at the recently concluded 2015 Essen Motor Show and had an opportunity for a quick chat with Heico’s founder, Mr. Holger Hedtke on his company’s new tuning programme for the second generation XC90.
9tro: What was the philosophy behind the XC90’s new aerokit from Heico?
Mr. Holger Hedtke: When the new XC90 first emerged onto the market it was the decision maker for Volvo in general. Everyone was very keen to see the car for the first time and it was positioned by Volvo as a top of the line premium vehicle. So having this positioning in mind, it was very clear that Heico must have a really top of the line product as well. Not only a product due to the fact we need a product but because we need to support it.
The spoiler, the bodykit and the wheel, which is newly designed, must have a meaning and a benefit to the customer. It follows the car’s design language, because the XC90 has a very strong and unique design speech. What Heico has done is to follow the design DNA, which was also designed by a German designer. So we understand fully what is going through the Volvo designer’s mind having Swedish design philosophy on one side, its not a very shiny car, but its a very self-confident and powerful looking car, and yet luxurious and premium. The Heico bodykit compliments the XC90’s lines perfectly with its technical features.
9tro: How about the interior of the XC90, has Heico tinkered with it?
Mr. Holger Hedtke: That is a big challenge, because Volvo has made a big step forward in terms of interior design. If you see the previous XC90 compared to all the other models. Volvo is all about materials and the way they work the materials into the car, its very premium now. They have chosen an interior designer from Bentley and you will find it immediately if you look into the details. So for a tuner company like Heico it is a big challenge to do something to top this.
Its never more the quality material that needs to be changed, but more about personalisation. With the XC90, Volvo is now targeting customers who want to add a personal touch to their cars. That is a chance for Heico, which we allow customers to choose another type of leather, not in terms of quality but in terms of the colour for instance and the way it is manufactured. So personalisation is the route we are taking with the XC90.