The Volvo XC40 has arrived into the sub-compact luxury crossover field and has shown itself to be thoroughly impressive and hard to fault.
In his review of the XC40, AutoGuide.com contributor Benjamin Hunting came away impressed with the XC40’s smart combination of good driving dynamics and inventive packaging of interior and cargo space. “There’s certainly enough substance behind the dazzle to seal the deal in the Volvo XC40 T5 after a test drive,” he said. The additional promise of an all-electric version tentatively due in 2020 makes it even more compelling.
Volvo has already scored big with the XC60 and XC90 crossovers and now the baby XC40 is following suit but still manages to be unique and represent something entirely new for the Volvo brand. Make sure to check out our full review, but here is a quick overview of the pros and cons of this new crossover.
2019 Volvo XC40 Pros and Cons
Looks Like a Volvo but Not a Clone: The XC40 resembles bigger siblings XC60 and XC90 and retains their handsome and clean lines but incorporates some new design cues that make it stand out in the family line of crossovers. A downward sloping grille, clamshell hood, and a different tail light treatment helps differentiate the crossover from the rest of the family. That uniqueness continues with a white alloy wheel option, an optional contrast roof, and a cool interior color option that turns the carpeting into a vibrant orange hue that is unlike anything else in the segment.
Competitive Powertrains: The sole engine available for the XC40 at launch will be the 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder. That engine, with its 248 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque mated to a quick shifting 8-speed automatic, gives a strong performance in both the XC60 and XC90. In the XC40 and with its reduced curb weight of about 400 pounds compared to its bigger siblings, the turbo turns the XC40 into an athletic sprinter on wheels and scoots to 60 mph in about 6.1 seconds. The best thing is, power delivery when getting to those higher speeds happens in a linear fashion and with impressive refinement. Later on in the year, a T4 model with a smaller engine and front-wheel drive will become an option. AWD is standard on the T5 model with the 2.0L turbo engine.
Subscription-Based Ownership: You can get the XC40 in the traditional ways: by either paying with cash, financing or leasing it. But with the XC40 and in an industry first, you can drive off under a simple subscription plan that lets you own the vehicle in the same way you can own a cellphone. The program is called Care by Volvo and is an all-inclusive payment plan that includes a monthly price for the vehicle that bundles in insurance, maintenance, and other fees within that price. That is an attractive model for people who want to simplify car ownership.
Affordable Starting Price: With a $36,195 ($41,515 in Canada) starting MSRP including destination, the XC40 is priced similarly to the competition, but it offers value for money by offering a lot of standard equipment. LED head and tail lights are standard. Other standard features include Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a 12-inch digital display, city safety collision avoidance technology, driver alert control (for distracted driving), lane keeping assist and mitigation, run off road mitigation and rear collision warning. Inside, there is standard real leather seating, power driver’s seat with memory, and a 9-inch Sensus Connect infotainment touchscreen.
Inventive Storage Solutions: The XC40 does away with front door speakers to make way for larger items such as a full-size laptop that could fit in the door bins comfortably. That is just one of the smart ways the car saves interior space. There is also a trashcan hidden in the center console and despite a small footprint, rear seat legroom comes in at an impressive 36.1 inches and total cargo space is just under 60 cubic feet.
ALSO SEE: 2019 Volvo XC40 Review and First Drive
Complicated Infotainment System: Sensus is a beautiful and innovative-looking touchscreen infotainment system, but it can be distracting and not user-friendly. Many important menus are buried too deep in the system, increasing the potential for being distracted while driving. The system would benefit from being simpler to use.
Still Not Seen as a Premium Brand: Despite being a legitimate luxury crossover in its own right and boasting an interior that puts more expensive vehicles to shame, the XC40 competes in a field filled with established luxury brands and compared to the likes of the BMW X2 or Audi Q3, the XC40 does not possess the luxury brand cachet these other brands are well known for. Anyone looking to purchase this vehicle and use it as a status symbol may come away a bit disappointed.
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