Is Volvo preparing a return to the coupe segment?

Volvo has filed a trademark application to protect the S50 nameplate. Trademark filings in the automotive industry usually ask more questions than they answer, and this is no exception.

There's never been a Volvo S50, so we can't look to the past for clues. Volvo's nomenclature system is pretty straight-forward; a 50-badged car would slot between the 40 and the 60 clusters. There's not much space to fill between the two families, so the possibility of a fourth cluster is unlikely at best.

As SwedeSpeed points out, S50 could be the name affixed to Volvo's next coupe. The name suggests the two-door would be an off-shoot of the next S40, and it would ride on the company's modular CMA platform.

Of course, Volvo might just be trying to protect its intellectual property, while making sure a rival doesn't try to imitate it. Skeptics point out Volvo's recent coupes and convertibles have all worn names that begin with a C, e.g. the C70 that was axed in 2013.

Volvo hasn't commented on the rumor. It hasn't formally announced a return to the coupe segment but it hasn't denied it, either.