The Volvo XC40 hit the roads with a fanfare of being Whatcar of the year?
But is It all its cracked up to be.
First of all this car does not really remind you of a Volvo. Now the recent Volvo SUV’s are good cars and look good on the road but the do give the impression of a mature car. Something your Grandad might drive that yeah you might want to borrow but to drive yourself maybe not. However the XC40 is different. The R Design in particular has a sporty feel to it and styling wise sits alongside its german rivals without looking like the boring friend in a cardigan.
So what is the XC40 all about well unlike must premium SUVs this is not just a scaled down version of the more premium bigger brothers in the range the XC60 and XC90. The XC40 has its own platform and the designers have been creative to allow it to still feel premium but a lot more affordable. Its being pitched as a rival for the Audi Q3, the BMW X1 or the Jaguar E Pace but we feel as though this car easily sits alongside the GLC, Q5 or Range Rover Evoque its actually bigger than we thought it would be.
It has 7 Trim levels starting from the Momentum which gets LED headlights, automatic wipers and lights, rear parking sensors, 18in alloy wheels, cruise control plus your ususal Volvo safety features. Inside, you will find dual-zone climate control, keyless ignition, electric windows, and Volvo’s Sensus infotainment system complete with a 9.0in portrait touchscreen display, DAB radio, sat nav, and Bluetooth and USB connectivity.
Upgrade to the R Design our personal favourite and you can leather seats LED front fog lights, gloss black exterior trim, a sporty bodykit, sports suspension and electric folding door mirrors, while the range-topping Inscription model gets driftwood interior touches, chrome highlights, ambient interior lighting, a powered tailgate, thick pile floor mats and front parking sensors.
For those craving a touch more luxury can choose the Pro versions of the three previous trims, which adds heated front seats, active bending headlight technology, electrically adjustable driver’s seat and a heated windscreen to a rather comprehensive package.
Engine wise starts from a 1.5 diesel to 250bhp petrol turbo which is what we tested. The car gave enough grunt to get the kids to school when you're running a bit late although the auto gearbox can be a bit unresponsive at times.
The car has a good enough boot space although not class leading but there is plenty of room in the back for 3 adults or 2 adults and a child seat very easily.
All in all the Volvo XC40 is a very good car and well deserved of its WhatCar award. Avery good alternative to the german and british contender in the Compact SUV market.
Watch out for the full Video review coming soon