Volvo Recharge – Launching the new electric XC range

The Brief

The launch of the electric Volvo Range took place over 3 beautiful autumn days in September 2019 at Thyme Hotel, Spa & Farm, a gorgeous estate in the Cotswolds. ​

The launch was to include driving experiences, presentations, accommodation, leisure activities and catering and the guest list comprised over 80 A-list automotive, consumer and lifestyle journalists from across the UK.

Noble Events was appointed to plan and execute the whole event, working closely with the client to create a test drive to appeal to a broad range of media, whilst staying true to the communications team’s acclaimed and widely recognised style: friendly, laid-back and professional in an understatedly luxury setting.

Location & Venue

The venue was chosen as it was within striking distance of London and because of its focus on ‘laid-back luxury’ – allowing attendees to take time out of their hectic lifestyles to recharge. ​

Thyme was the perfect luxury setting for this theme of the event. A venue that’s described as “a village within a village” due to its large estate area but community feel, Thyme supplied Noble Events with accommodation of all varieties, a spa, outdoor pool, farmhouse, 2 restaurants, and fantastic courtyards. The stunning visuals of the rooms and exquisite food were a bonus, with seasonal produce sourced by the estate whenever possible.

The Schedule

Guests arrived from early evening and were invited to indulge in a relaxing pre-dinner hot air balloon ride – using Volvo XC90s as tethers – before an exquisite dinner in the stunningly converted Ox Barn. Pre and post dinner drinks were served in the Baa.​

The following morning, guests watched a pre-recorded tongue-in-cheek media conference, giving key UK & global brand news, as well as the inside track on the new Volvo XC90. Global and UK spokespersons were made available for media interviews throughout the event. A scrumptious buffet lunch was then served in the rustic and welcoming Tithe Barn.

Test drives of the various new electrified Volvo models were scheduled at journalists’ convenience, and they were also able to choose their own personalised ‘Recharge’ programme, including chilling by the pool, yoga sessions, holistic massages, cycling around the village, a drink in a local village pub, clay pigeon shooting and even a wander through the Cotswold countryside with a local rescue dog.​

Verdict

The event was extremely well received by both client and media, and successfully achieved the objective of creating a luxurious and ‘laid-back’ media event in Volvo’s familiar and individual style. In particular, the hot air balloon ride was a fantastic touch. ​Guests were won over by the event and grateful for the opportunity to ‘recharge’.

Mike Gale, Volvo’s Head of PR, said "the Recharge event received some superb comments from our media guests on the event, not just on the clever and creative dual concept (of recharging the electrified car batteries as well as their own) itself, but also the amount of preparation and thought that they could clearly see had gone into it.

Most importantly of all, we achieved our objective of securing some top media coverage across a broad range of titles and the journalists (PR team, spokespeople, fleet team & their guests who followed on the event we'd set-up), enjoyed themselves and we cemented our reputation for fun, high-quality, memorable and on-brand laid-back luxury events."

Noble Event’s Managing Director, Penny Noble, added “working with such a bold PR team at Volvo enables us as an agency to capture our own imagination and translate that into memorable creative solutions as seen on the “Recharge” event. It was, as ever, a privilege to work with the Volvo brand. Our team always gets a real buzz out of these events”.