Published on September 22nd, 2017 | by Seán Ward0
Meet The Volvo XC40, Volvo’s SUV Baby
Nine years after Volvo introduced the XC60 and a whopping 15 years after introducing the XC90, Volvo has launched its third and smallest SUV, the XC40. The location? Sunny Milan, Italy, a premium location for Volvo’s “small premium SUV”.
It’s an important model for Volvo, not just because the SUV market is booming and there’s serious money to be made if the XC40 is any good, and because the XC40 is the first Volvo to be built with Volvo’s new “modular vehicle architecture” known as CMA, co-developed with Volvo’s parent company Geely.
I’m personally not a fan of that huge c-pillar (I just don’t think it’s necessary or attractive), but for the most part it’s a smart looking machine, crisp, precise and modern as you’d expect any modern Volvo to be.
The interior is exactly what you’d expect from Volvo, and anyone who’s driven an S90, XC60 or XC90 will feel right at home. From the pictures at least, the interior looks absolutely stunning. It’s orange. As standard in the ‘Momentum’ trim you get Volvo’s Sensus 9″ touch screen with voice control, a 12.3″ driver’s display, real time traffic updates on the sat-nav, rear parking sensors, dual-zone climate control, and Volvo On Call, a system that allows you to control certain functions remotely from your phone and will direct emergency services to your location if you’re involved in an accident.
There’s tonnes of standard safety kit too, including from City Safety emergency braking and ‘Oncoming Lane Mitigation’.
If you’ve got cash to spare you can opt for an XC40 R-Design and be treated to things like a gloss black front grille, a black roof and door mirrors, beefier sports suspension, 18″ diamond cut or matt black alloy wheels, and aluminium dashboard inlays. Alternatively you could chose an XC40 Inscription, which focusses on luxury rather than sport. Slightly confusingly, though, Momentum, Inscription and R-Design can all be specced up to ‘Pro’, where there’s even more kit up for grabs. I won’t go into the details here simply because it would take too long.
There’s a broad choice of engines and transmissions, although the first XC40s to reach the UK will be either T5 and D4 First Editions. Eventually, though, engines will range from T3 to T5, you’ll be able to chose between a manual or an automatic gearbox, and you can decide whether to stick with front-wheel drive or pay a little more for all-wheel drive. Hybrid models and a full electric XC40 will be along in the near future, too.
Pilot Assist, Volvo’s semi-autonomous driving system, is an optional extra across the whole range, allowing the car to accelerate, brake and assist with the steering at up to 80mph, but fear not, autonomous cars aren’t here just yet. This system merely aims to take some of the stress and effort out of longer journeys.
You can order an XC40 now, with deliveries due to start at the start of 2018. The T5 AWD First Edition will be automatic only and set you back £40,355, whereas the D4 AWD First Edition will cost you £39,305 and also be automatic only. When other models arrive, though, the prices will be much less intimidating, starting off at £27,905 for the T3 FWD Momentum.
Now all we need to do is drive it.