- What can the fancier brother of the electric Volvo XC40 do?
- What is that?
- This is how it drives:
- What does it cost?
- Picture gallery: Volvo C40 Recharge (2021) in the first driving report
What can the fancier brother of the electric Volvo XC40 do?
A beautiful back can delight. It is not possible to determine exactly where this saying comes from. At least one has probably taken it to heart at Volvo, like the new C40 indicates. At first I also thought: An electric XC40 Recharge in different packaging.
That is not entirely wrong and yet the C40 follows its own line in the truest sense of the word.
What is that?
It starts with the name: C40. The only C-car currently in the Volvo model range. And C always stood for special concepts for the Swedes. Here the compact C30 in Shooting Brake optics, there the open C70. In addition, unlike the XC40, the C40 will only be available as an electric car. Burners? Never!
Let's take a look at the optics. In reality, the C40 looks really good, even though the historical connection to the P 1800 from 1961 seems to have been tried hard. Volvo refers to the shape of the rear windows, as shown in the following photo. As a classic car connoisseur, I see parallels between the rear and the "humpback Volvo" PV 444 and PV 544.
In keeping with this, the C40 is exactly 4.44 meters long and, despite the sleek lines, still 1.60 meters high. When entering the rear, you still need to duck your head. Once there, the space is very neat. The trunk volume is also within the green range at 413 to 1,205 liters.
The Volvo C40 Recharge Pure Electric (that's its full name) offers additional storage space under the front hood. Where the combustion engine is usually installed, the electric vehicle has a two-part storage compartment with a capacity of 31 liters.
Not unimportant: Volvo specifies the payload as 413 kilograms, the C40 is allowed to pull 1,800 kilograms with brakes and 750 kilograms without brakes. But while we're on the subject of weights, the 2.2 tonnes that the C40 weighs in empty shouldn't go unmentioned. After all, we're talking about a car roughly the size of an Opel Astra.
Two spoilers optimize the aerodynamics: one on the roof edge and one at the bottom of the tailgate. Together they reduce air resistance and increase the range at higher speeds by up to four percent; with a combined driving style it is two percent. The lower spoiler also increases downforce and thus improves driving stability at higher speeds.
The design of the LED taillights is also new. In classic Volvo fashion, they run vertically along the rear window, but are strongly inclined and divided into individual segments. In the area of the lower tailgate, the lights extend towards the center of the vehicle.
Further design features are the Volvo lettering under the rear window and the optical underride protection in high-gloss black. Side detail: the track is 25 mm wider at the rear than on the front axle.
This is how it drives:
With its brother, the XC40 Recharge, the C40 shares the CMA platform, the wheelbase of 2.70 meters and the cockpit. Both 40s roll off the assembly line in Ghent, Belgium. What the duo have in common, however, is the not always coherent operation via the 9-inch portrait touchscreen. Almost all functions except the volume have to be typed, the infotainment is based on the Android operating system. You get used to all of this at some point, but other brands are less cumbersome.
The materials are also special: The C40 is said to be the first completely leather-free Volvo. I notice the blue carpeting. And the somewhat plain plastic on the doors. Judging by Volvo's premium standards and the price of the car, there is still room for improvement.
How does the C40 drive now? Very fast and light-footed than the weight suggests. The two electric motors used, each with 150 kW (204 hp), which together send 660 Newton meters of torque to the wheels, play a not unjustified role in this. 4.7 seconds to 100 km / h speak for themselves and ensure driving fun on the motorway, but also in the hustle and bustle of the city.
But what quickly becomes apparent: Curve-scratching sports intentions are not in the genes of the C40, it is too high and too heavy for that. His domain is long stretches of motorway with a 130 cut, on which you can comfortably listen to your Spotify playlist.
Is the range enough for that? Well, Volvo officially states 444 kilometers after WLTP. In addition, an average consumption of 22.0 KWh per 100 km. With a high proportion of the motorway, I got 22.9 kWh. A plus point is the well-balanced recuperation, one-pedal driving is pleasant. And while we're at the point of praise, the C40 also rolls off well-balanced with a 20-inch monitor.
And the charging? The usable storage capacity is 75 kW, and up to 150 kW can be charged. Then you should need 37 minutes from 10 to 80 percent, 68 minutes at 50 kW. If you use AC, i.e. alternating current, you have to be patient: Here, Volvo specifies times between 8 hours (three-phase, 16 A) to 72 hours (single-phase, 240 V, 6 A). Volvo gives 8 years or 160,000 kilometers guarantee on the battery.
What does it cost?
Let's finish and the price. The C40 Recharge is only sold online and is currently only available with two engines as a "1st Edition" including the CARE program. Means: Hardly any extras other than colors, rims and fabrics. Insurance, service, maintenance and wear and tear are also included. This puts the 62,050 euros into perspective a little, but remains a lot of money for a car that is not that big at all.
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Let's take a quick look at the competition: In terms of design, it would be the new Kia EV6 to be mentioned in the format of the Mercedes EQA. The EV6 with a similarly sized battery, all-wheel drive and 325 hp looks a bit cheaper on paper, but comes close to the Volvo when adjusted for equipment. The same is true of the EQA 350 4matic with 292 hp. If necessary, it can effortlessly exceed the 60,000 euro mark.
Visually, the new Volvo C40 is definitely an eye-catcher. Despite its special shape, it offers plenty of space inside. However, the top version is actually overpowered and too expensive. As with the XC40, we hope for an entry-level version with 170 kW (231 PS) on the front axle and a price of less than 50,000 euros. That doesn't change anything about the successful design.
Picture gallery: Volvo C40 Recharge (2021) in the first driving report
Volvo C40 Recharge Twin 1st Edition
engine Two permanent magnet synchronous motors, front and rear 150 kW (204 PS) each
Max. Torque 660 Nm (system performance)
battery Lithium-ion, 78 kW (maximum capacity), 75 kW (usable capacity)
drive all wheel drive
Acceleration 0-100 km / h 4.7 sec.
Top speed 180 km / h
Gear type 1-speed automatic
length 4,440 mm
broad 1,873 mm
height 1,596 mm
Ground clearance 177 mm
Fording depth 450 mm
Trunk volume 413 – 1,205 liters
Empty weight 2,207 kg
Payload 413 kg
Trailer load 1,800 kg (braked), 750 kg (unbraked)
Electric range 444 km
Charging port DC, AC three-phase, AC single-phase
Charging time 37 minutes (150 kW), 68 minutes (50 kW), 10 – 80 percent each
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