Volvo insists its identity will not disappear with its formal acquisition today by Chinese automaker Zhejiang Geely Holding Group.

The US1.8bn deal will see Volvo’s ownership transfer from Ford to Geely with former Chief Executive of Volkswagen Group of America Stefan Jacoby becoming president and CEO from 16 August.

But any thoughts Volvo might now assume a more Chinese identity have been batted back by Volvo, which insists it will remain largely independent.

“Most people are happy here that this is finally done and we can continue and develop the company in [the] long term,” a Volvo spokesman in Sweden told just-auto.

“I don’t foresee changes – it has been very clearly stated that Volvo will stay Volvo and Geely will stay Geely. We will be kept pretty much alone here. It has been said so many times to management, employees and unions.”

The Volvo spokesman added as far as he had heard “the unions say they have been waiting for this” [acquisition] and that the labour organisations were happy with the new board of directors also announced today.

A large proportion of the Volvo workforce is currently on its annual holiday – “it is completely empty here” said the spokesman – with Jacoby’s start in a fortnight heralding the new management of the new operation.