Volvo XC40

Autozine – Auto Test: Volvo XC40

Whichever XC40 you choose, this compact SUV from Volvo combines an undeniably muscular look “Sports Utility Vehicle” with an understated Scandinavian look. For example, the XC40 has a high shoulder line, but it looks friendly. The closed grille reveals that the car shown is an electric-powered XC40. After all, the electric motor generates almost no heat as a by-product and by closing the grille, aerodynamics are improved. This results in lower consumption and less road noise.

Volvo XC40

Inside, each XC40 has the same layout and materials as traditional sedans and Volvo estate cars. This shows that this SUV is not intended for adventurous trips to remote areas. The XC40 is a luxury car chosen for its easy entry and high seating position, not for off-road use.

Room

The hallmark of the Volvo is the one-piece front seat. The reason behind this is that many customers do not adjust the headrest to the correct height and therefore are not optimally protected in the event of an accident. Fixed headrests have the best average height and therefore offer the highest average safety. The space at the front is more than adequate. The space in the back is just enough for two adults, making the XC40 averagely spacious for a car of this size.

Volvo XC40
Volvo XC40

The volume of the luggage compartment depends on the selected drive. The XC40 only with the petrol engine has the largest trunk (452 ​​liters, 1,328 with the rear seats folded). This electric-powered variant offers 419 liters and 1,295 with the rear seats folded. A collapsible loading floor is very practical, which can also serve as a barrier, so that, for example, shopping bags do not fall. There’s a recess under the loading floor for the charging cable, though there’s also room for it in the storage space under the hood. As an electric car, the XC40 can tow a 1,500 kg trailer (1,800 kg for the extra strong “P8”).

Equipment

Average equipment for a car in this price range. In addition, Volvo has traditionally placed more emphasis on safety than other brands. And there is another point where Volvo deviates from the standard. Volvo has discontinued development of its own audio, communication and navigation systems. Instead, it uses the freely available “android phone”similar to Android on mobile.

However, Android is free because its makers make money from user data. And it is clear in practice! A Google Account is required for anything and everything and those who don’t have one (or don’t want to share one with a car) have very limited options. Connecting an external phone via Android Auto or Apple CarPlay is not yet possible. You can share music via Bluetooth, but here too the options are limited as long as you’re not signed in and/or aren’t working with Google apps.

Volvo XC40

When Android Mobile works, it works fine. Smart and clear planned route. Speech recognition is excellent and sporadically surprises the system with smart answers. So the question becomes “What’s the latest?” answered with a compilation of news reports from various radio stations. On balance, however, it’s very noticeable that Volvo is the first and for now the only customer of Android Mobile. It also raises concerns about the future, as Volvo is completely dependent on Google for development (and user privacy!).

Electric car

To date, the electric-powered XC40 is only available with two electric motors (four-wheel drive) which together produce 408 hp. It makes “XC40 Rechargeable Dual Engine P8” for a real party for auto journalists and other enthusiasts, but in practical terms that’s too good of a thing. And of course all these advantages come with a hefty price tag.

That’s why the XC40 is now also available with a single electric motor, reducing power and cost. It The “XC40 Rechagre Single Motor P6” costs roughly the same as a comparable petrol XC40, but is quieter, cleaner, more comfortable and significantly cheaper per kilometer. And don’t think the P6 with its 231 hp is slow, because the XC40 is as fierce and passionate as only electric cars can! Without building laps or doing a run-up first, the P6 sped off. This “entry-level” model outperforms most combustion engine cars and works so effortlessly that it provides a superior feel.

Volvo XC40

As standard, the XC40 rolls when the power pedal is released, just like a traditional combustion engine car. In “1 pedal” mode, the XC40 actually holds firmly when releasing the power pedal. Then maximum energy is restored and the brake pedal is only needed in an emergency situation. Single-pedal driving takes some getting used to, but is ultimately experienced by most drivers as an advantage of electric driving.

“The “Volvo XC40 P6” costs the same as similar combustion engine SUVs, but is quieter, faster, cleaner and more affordable”

The XC40 Recharge doesn’t have an old fashioned button or start button. By simply inserting the machine “Drive” the car starts and can be driven. On the contrary, it was sufficient for “Park” to select and exit the vehicle. The car then shuts down automatically and locks the door. That’s how it should be!

Range and charging

Since the XC40 P6 has only one electric motor, its energy consumption is much lower than that of the P8 with its two motors. The latter consumed around 23 kWh/100 km during the previous test drive. The now-tested P6 clocked in at 19 kWh/100 km after a week of driving. However, this is still high compared to other compact SUVs with electric drive.

With a lighter motor, a lighter battery will suffice. It “XC40 Single Engine” has a powerful battery of 69 kWh. According to the brochure, 415 km can be covered under ideal conditions. During this test in moderate weather conditions, the distance was 360 km. That’s more than enough to be able to drive carefree without having to plan a trip in advance.

Volvo XC40

Charging is possible at public charging points with 11 kW and on fast chargers with a maximum of 150 kW. In tests on fast chargers, speeds of 100 kW were easily achieved. This speed was maintained for a long time, but the promised 150 kW was never achieved. During charging, the display behind the wheel shows how many kilowatts are being charged and how much additional range is available after one hour of charging (charging speed in km/h).

Handling

All modern cars have batteries on the floor, giving them a low center of gravity and center for stable and safe handling. That also applies to the XC40 Refill. However, Volvo makes a different choice when it comes to driving. If not all wheel drive, most electric cars have rear wheel drive.

The XC40 P6 only drives the front wheels. In low-power cars, the difference between front and rear wheel drive is barely noticeable. However, with its 231 hp it is very clear that the XC40 Single Motor only has front-wheel drive. The front wheel can barely handle the force! Although traction control rarely needs intervention, it is often seen in steering that the front wheels must handle both forward and lateral forces at the same time.

Volvo has opted for front-wheel drive because it ensures the best weight distribution. This gives the car a neutral and predictable character for relaxed driving.

Volvo XC40

Conclusion

The Volvo XC40 is a true sales success. This is partly due to the distinctively Scandinavian design, simple design, space and of course above average attention to safety.

This success is also due (in part) to the electric powered version. However, as of now it’s a super-fast hybrid (plugin) and “dual engine”. The “P6 Rechargeable Single XC40 Engine” is a welcome addition to this with modest power and therefore at an affordable price. “Volvo XC40 P6” costs the same as similar combustion engine SUVs, but is quieter, faster, cleaner and more economical.

When asked “will the Single Engine further enhance the success of the XC40?” however, the answer is “no”. What this version will primarily do is prolong its success. Demand for fuel-powered cars has fallen sharply and the affordable P6 makes it easy to upgrade to the electric XC40.

plus

  • good price
  • Comfortable
  • Remote / Fast Charging

min

  • A light whistle sounds from the electric motor
  • Android Mobile raises concerns about privacy and future
  • The front wheels can barely handle the engine power

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