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The Volvo V40 is Volvo’s latest addition to their range. It is a five-door hatchback that will likely be more popular with business leases than personal customers, however, it is stylish enough to draw envy from Audi A3 drivers and BMW 1-Series drivers around the world.
It all starts from the outside. The Volvo V40 in R-Design trim really is stunning. It’s aggressive, for sure, but it is not overdone in the same way that you’d expect of something with a VXR badge. Volvo have made a good compromise here by appealing to current customers, who value safety and refinement, and younger customers who value style and road presence. Gloss black accents, large alloy wheels with black contrasts, and satin finish mirror casing help the V40 to make the likes of a VW Golf look rather boring in comparison.
Inside, the stylish theme continues. This is an extremely nice car to be in, and yes, it features Volvo’s trademark floating centre console, but there’s now storage behind it, so it’s actually got a purpose other than to blow the mind of your youngest child. Every single knob and all switchgear is of an extremely high quality, and the driving position is top rate. Steering wheel controls and a gorgeous high quality digital gauge system add technology to the mix – the V40 has no traditional gauges, and instead relies on a digital version to get the job done. In the real world, it works extremely well.
The T2 is fitted with a 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine that develops 118 bhp and 177 lb /ft of torque – that’s the same amount of torque as Ford’s 1.6-litre EcoBoost engine. The result is a car that is extremely responsive, but never fast, although keep your foot pressed to the floor and it’ll hurl you down the road at a respectable pace. Motorway buyers will likely be better served by a Vertu Cars Volvo V40 equipped with a diesel engine, which will offer better economy.
The Volvo V40 T2 R-Design is stylish, refined, gorgeous inside and rather sporty – it is, in many ways, a car that Volvo has been in desperate need of for years. With its class leading safety features and high levels of equipment, the V40 is a real world alternative to the likes of, say, a Volkswagen Golf, but it actually competes more with the Audi A3 and BMW 1-Series in terms of price. I’d say that it is a more pleasurable car to travel in than those competitors, but it isn’t quite as sharp to drive as a 1-Series, nor is it quite as refined as an Audi A3. Still, it gets bloomin’ close, and it’s a worthy new addition to Volvo’s range.