Volvo wants to take a leading position in car connectivity (Photo: Volvo)

Ericsson will help Volvo Cars speed up the roll-out of new connected car services, as the Chinese-owned Swedish automaker plans to boost its competitiveness in the global premium car market.

Volvo said in a press release it will rely on Ericsson's Multiservice Delivery Platform to provide cloud-based infotainment, apps and communication services in its upcoming models.

"Cars in the near future will integrate the same level of digital services that consumers today are used to have in their homes or at work," said Lex Kerssemakers, who heads product strategy at Volvo Cars. "This is a strategically important part of Volvo Cars' investments for the future where we intend to take a leading position."

Ericsson, a major Swedish communications technology group, said it would handle global systems integration and would provide managed services for all forms of connectivity in Volvo cars.

"Drivers want services that technology makes posssible, in real time and in the context that fits them personally," said Per Borgklint, head of Ericsson's Support Solutions business.

Volvo's global sales fell 6 pc to 383,396 units in the first 11 months of the year, with the important Chinese market dropping 9 pc to 37,633 units.

The Swedish group, which is owned by Chinese carmaker Geely,  plans to build more cars in China, raise brand awareness and open more dealerships as it attempts to improve its performance in China.

Hakan Samuelsson, who took over as CEO from Stefan Jacoby in October, told the Financial Times last week that it will be "very, very difficult" to achieve a break-even result this year. And next year, that same target "will also be very tough."

To improve profitability, Samuelsson intends to make cuts in a range of expenditures, including  consultancy services, IT and advertising.  "We will be very strict on costs to come through these two years," Samuelsson told the FT.