Editor: Jason “The Bok” Date – 22 Aug 2018
The Swedish started automaker Volvo has been doing phenomenal things since the introduction of the range-topping XC90 SUV back in 2016. What was a brand image previously primarily synonymous with being somewhat “old in thinking” and just purely about safety, the modern face of Volvo offers so much more and the XC40 really does deliver as a vehicle of firsts on so many fronts.
What does the XC40 introduce which is unique?
The XC40 is the first ever Volvo which offers:
- A 3-cylinder motor within the brand
- A thoroughly modern palette of dual-tone exterior colours
- And, a wealth of unique and elegant interior trim options
- First Volvo to make use of the new CMA platform which it will share with the upcoming V40
All of this is before even mentioning that the XC40 is the smallest SUV which has ever been offered by Volvo.
The design language of the XC40 very much carries across from the modern face of Volvo. Bold and unique Thors Hammer inspired LED lights carry into what is a Swedish elegance and simplicity. Available with dual-tone body colours, the exterior of the XC40 remains unique and lifestyle funky, all while keeping a suave level of sophistication.
The interior space features typically Volvo ultra-comfortable seating and what is a minimalistic, yet excellently ergonomically laid out cabin space. Centre stage is taken by the Volvo 9-inch Sensus multimedia touchscreen display which performs much like an Ipad or Android-based tablet PC.
Big on Safety & Tech
The Volvo brand has always had safety set as top priority when building cars. The XC40, much like its larger siblings, the XC60 and XC90 features countless active and passive safety systems which will not only mitigate potential collisions but also avoid potential harm caused to both vehicle passengers and pedestrians.
The XC40 rides on Volvo’s newly developed CMA platform. It makes for a very smooth riding and comfortable drive while keeping the XC40 nimble on its toes. Options such as Harmon Kardon sound and a wealth of media sources are delivered through the Sensus multimedia system which includes the likes of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto on demand.
The XC40 is available with several petrol and diesel driven engines. This range-topping T5 turbopetrol driven model features an impressive 185 kW and 350 Nm of torque. 0 – 100 km/h is handled in just 6.4 seconds and fuel economy is claimed by Volvo at 7.7-litres per 100 km. I was averaging anywhere between 8.5 – 9.7-litres per 100 km during my time spent driving the T5 model.
All power is sent through Volvo’s very smooth and comfortable 8-speed automatic transmission.
SA Price & Conclusion
The XC40 appears to be following in the line of the other recent products from Volvo. It has already taken been awarded European Car of The Year for 2018, along with the XC60 which took current World Car of The Year. If its 5 star Euro NCAP safety rating and lineage to the mighty award-winning XC90 is anything to go by, the only problem that the XC40 will face is a lack of supply for an ever-increasing demand.
A very nice to have extra which can be added to further improve your XC40 includes the R-Design extra pack (on top of the R-Design model), which costs R37,000 and gets you heated seats, an electrically-activated tailgate, park-assist and a reverse-view camera all as part of its extra convenience features.