Volvo XC40 Electric: Pros, Cons and Other Considerations
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As fuel prices continue to rise and electric vehicle (EV) technology comes down in cost, seemingly every automaker is getting in on demand for gasoline-free vehicles. This includes the luxury automaker Volvo, which has a few electrified vehicles and is the parent company to the all-electric Polestar lineup.
In 2021, Volvo introduced an electric version of its compact XC40 dubbed the XC40 Recharge. This small, all-electric crossover has a lot to offer customers, including quick acceleration, premium features, an upscale interior, and a classic exterior design.
Below, we cover the ins and outs of the Volvo XC40 electric to help you decide if it’s the right electric compact SUV for you.
Volvo XC40 Recharge Overview
The Volvo XC40 Recharge is based on the brand’s compact crossover, the XC40. This means it shares the majority of its interior and exterior design with it. It features a sharp, upright design with muscular body lines and a mature look for its class. The only ways to distinguish the Volvo XC40 Recharge from its source material are its closed-off grille and the charging port.
Inside, the Volvo XC40 Recharge mimics the base XC40. It boasts a 9-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Google Assistant built in. This infotainment system does not support Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, though the base XC40’s infotainment system does.
The XC40 is a fully electric vehicle with no gasoline backup, so it may take planning and preparation if you’re planning a long trip. However, with DC Fast Chargers cropping up virtually everywhere, long-distance traveling is a reality.
Read on to learn more about the Volvo XC40 Recharge.
Volvo XC40 Recharge Pricing and Availability
So far, the XC40 Recharge is available in just one flavor, the Recharge P8 all-wheel drive (AWD) trim. This model starts from a manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of $55,300 and rises as you add optional equipment, like heated seats, a smartphone charging pad, or a Harman Kardon audio system.
Like many EVs, the XC40 Recharge is limited in availability, but it’s available nationwide.
You can save a bit of money by taking advantage of the electric car tax credit. The Recharge is eligible for up to $7,500 in federal tax incentives.
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Battery Capacity and Range
Fueling the XC40 Recharge’s electric motors is a lithium-ion battery pack that can deliver up to 223 miles on a charge. According to the EPA, the XC40 Recharge will deliver 92 MPGe city, 79 MPGe highway, and 85 MPGe combined.
This will translate to an estimated $750 in additional costs on your electric bill for charging per year for the average driver. But overall, you’ll save an estimated $1,650 per year compared to the average gasoline-fueled vehicle.
When charging on a DC Fast Charger, the XC40 Recharge takes about 37 minutes to go from 10% to 80%, which will deliver about 178 miles of EV range.
If you get a Level 2 charger installed (which gives you a 240-volt, 40-amp home charging station), recharging this electric SUV will take about 7 hours. Getting a charger installed is another area for savings thanks to the EV charger tax credit.
The XC40 Recharge’s multi-use charging cable also allows you to charge it using a standard household 110-volt plug, but Volvo doesn’t list a charging time.
Volvo XC40 Recharge Pros
The Volvo XC40 Recharge is a powerful option for any buyer seeking a small crossover with premium features that requires no gasoline. Here are some of its key pros.
The Volvo XC40 may be small in stature, but its drivetrain is surprisingly big on power, as its electric motors crank out 402 horsepower. This is good for a 4.7-second 0-to-60 sprint, which is on-par with many of today’s sports cars.
Like all Volvo cars, the XC40 Recharge has superior ride quality and minimal road noise, which goes well with its silent electric powertrain.
While it lacks the range and supercar-like acceleration specs of the Tesla Model Y, the XC40 comes in at a lower cost and offers a more premium feel.
Many electric vehicles go a little over the top in their design. For example, the Model Y is shaped like a bubble on the outside and has a strange yoke-like steering wheel on the inside.
The Volvo XC40 Rechange skips all this and delivers a classic upright SUV design that better suits the typical car buyer. Sure, some people want that futuristic look, but the masses will appreciate Volvo’s simplicity.
Volvo is famous for safety, and the XC40 Recharge is no exception. It is an IIHS Top Safety Pick+ and comes standard with an array of high-tech safety features, including:
- Blind-spot monitors with steering assist
- Adaptive cruise control
- Lane-departure warning and active lane control
- Automatic high-beam LED headlights
- Automatic emergency braking
- Surround-view camera
Google Is Built In
The Volvo XC 40 Recharge has Google Assistant built right into its infotainment system. This allows you to voice search for items while driving and also includes built-in Google Maps for added convenience when navigating unknown areas.
Volvo XC40 Recharge Cons
There’s a lot to love about the Volvo XC40 Recharge, but it’s not perfect. Here are a few cons to consider before buying this electric SUV.
Today, many EVs hover around the 300-mile driving range, like the 314-mile range of the Ford Mustang Mach-E. The XC40 Recharge only delivers 223 miles of range, meaning more recharges on a long trip. However, as a daily driver, that’s more than enough range.
Relatively Poor Fuel Economy Equivalent
No one would complain about 85 mpg combined in a gasoline vehicle, but for an EV, 85 MPGe is pretty low. The Tesla Model Y is rated at 123 MPGe combined, and the Chevy Bolt EUV sits at 115 MPGe.
The XC40 Recharge does, however, beat the Audi e-tron’s 78 MPGe.
No Smartphone Integration (Yet)
Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are staples in most cars these days. Even the XC40 Recharge’s gasoline sibling comes standard with it. But the Recharge model only has Google Assistant and Google Maps. Sure, this is nice, but having the full suite of Android Auto and Apple CarPlay enhances the in-cabin experience.
This could change soon, as Volvo may release an update that adds this functionality.
Limited Cargo Room
Crossovers are all about cargo room, but the XC40 Recharge is surprisingly limited in this area. It has just 15.3 cubic feet of space with the rear seats upright and 46 cubic feet with the rear seats folded. This means there is limited space for hauling groceries or luggage with all the seats occupied. You might not be able to transport larger furniture with the rear seats folded.
The Model Y offers significantly more at 30.2 cubic feet with the seats up (double the Recharge’s space) and 76.2 cubes with seats folded. The Audi e-tron has 27.2 cubic feet of room with the rear seats up and 54.5 cubic feet with them lowered.
The XC40 has a little extra space in its front trunk (frunk), but that’s just a few cubic feet.
Should You Snag This Compact Electric Crossover?
A new Volvo XC40 Recharge is a solid electric crossover for shoppers seeking a daily commuter with upscale features and at a lower cost. It’s also a great option for those who want a little speed in their lives.
However, if you have a large family and haul a lot of cargo, the limited room in the XC40 Recharge will disappoint. Plus, if you often take road trips, its 223-mile all-electric range is very light compared to others in the class, and its 37-minute DC Fast Charging time is significantly higher than the Model Y’s 200 miles in 15 minutes.
With its sharp looks, upscale cabin, and fun-to-drive nature, the Volvo is a solid option for smaller families, young professionals, and even empty nesters.
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