It’s no secret that Volvo is one of the leading premium car makers in the world. The brand is innovative, appealing, and affordable. In recent years, it has undergone something of a range transformation. Today, one of the hottest new models to come from the Swedish firm is the V40 hatchback.
The aim of the car is to compete with the likes of the Audi A3 and BMW 1 Series. Volvo hopes to become a leader in the premium hatchback segment, and it looks like it is succeeding!
Are you thinking of buying a new hatch and want something a bit upmarket? Fed up with the ‘usual’ choices on the market? Here’s why you need to give some strong consideration to the Volvo V40:
A broad selection of engine choices
Let’s face it; when you buy a car, you will need to choose one with an engine suited to your needs. Whether it’s frugal fuel economy or hot hatch performance, Volvo’s got something for everyone! The V40 comes with an array of different engine and transmission options.
For those that need a mile munching diesel, there is the 1.6-litre D2 power plant. Offering a reasonable 118 bhp, it provides up to 82 MPG combined. If you’re a company car driver, you should be choosing this engine. There’s also a more powerful engine, the 2.0 D4, which is 187 bhp and has a fuel economy of up to 67 MPG combined.
When it comes to CO2 emissions, the 1.6 diesel is a low 89 g/km, and that means free car tax! Meanwhile, the 2.0 version is 99 g/km. Again, no car tax to pay; hooray!
What if it’s hot hatch performance you want? Opt for one of the R Design trims, and you’ll get a 2.0 T5 turbo petrol engine. Boasting 250 bhp, it does 0-60 mph in 5.9 seconds and has a top speed of 155 mph. Fuel economy isn’t too bad at 34 MPG combined, and CO2 emissions are 189 g/km. That means you’ll have to pay £270 a year on car tax.
If you want a petrol engine but don’t care about performance, there are three other options. They all centre around a 1.6-litre engine but offer different power outputs:
The T2 is 118 bhp and offers fuel consumption of 53 MPG combined. CO2 emissions are 124 g/km (£110 a year for car tax); The T3 delivers 147 brake horsepower and combined fuel economy of 53MPG. Carbon emissions and car tax are the same as the T2 above;
Last, but not least, there is the T4 petrol engine. With 177 bhp as standard, fuel economy is slightly lower at 51 MPG combined. Again, CO2 emissions are only 124 g/km (and £110 a year for car tax).
Most engines are available with either six-speed manual transmissions or Volvo’s 6-speed Geartronic. The latter are Aisin Tiptronic units from Japan.
The next question people will ask is how much does it cost? Well, Volvo price the V40 model around the mid-way point when including competing models. The current generation has been around since 2012 so you can pick up some used bargains if you don’t want a new one. In either case, dealers like Harratts usually have offers on both new and used models.
A raft of useful features – even in the basic trim models
One thing I love about Volvo is that they don’t skimp on the features offered in their cars. Even the basic ES entry-level trim comes with a lot of kit as standard! For example, it boasts dynamic stability and traction control. Comfort features include front and rear power windows and a Bluetooth infotainment systems. You also get climate control as well.
The SE comes with cruise control, electric mirrors and keyless engine starting. The SE Lux trim improves on that and adds Xenon headlights, leather seats among other items.
At the top of the range is the R Design, and this is the one you can get the T5 engine with! As standard, it features a sporty exterior, sports pedals, and a bigger touchscreen display. The R Design Nav also adds satellite navigation.
On the road with the Volvo V40
So, we know what you get for your money and what’s under the bonnet. But, what is the car like to drive? Well, as you can imagine, the Volvo V40 comes with a plethora of safety features as standard. For instance, there is the City Safety system. In a nutshell, the car will brake for you at speeds under 30 mph if you forget.
There isn’t much body roll while you go around corners – a welcome feature! You can also adjust the dynamics of the V40’s handling on the centre console.
In general, the car feels and handles like a premium vehicle should. Road noise is minimal, and the car is a dream to park.
Go take one out for a test drive today. It might just change your mind about getting an Audi or BMW!