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Volvo XC40 Electric review

2021 onwards (change model)
Parkers overall rating: 2.5 out of 52.5
” Pure-electric powertrain suits Volvo’s smallest SUV “

At a glance

Price new £46,505 - £61,855
Used prices £21,260 - £38,653
Road tax cost £0
Insurance group 35 - 42
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Fuel economy 2.5 - 3.7 miles/kWh
Range 248.5 - 333.7 miles
Miles per pound 4.0 - 10.9
View full specs for a specific version

Available fuel types

Fully electric

Pros & cons

PROS
  • 408hp model has rapid acceleration
  • Maximum official range of 348 miles
  • Same boot and cabin space as standard car
CONS
  • Expensive to lease
  • Some rivals are more spacious
  • Not that entertaining to drive

Written by Tom Wiltshire Published: 18 May 2023 Updated: 1 March 2024

Overview

The XC40 was always destined to become a fully electric vehicle. In fact, plans for the Recharge (electric) version were already underway when the model was launched, so it’s no surprise that the transition has been a wholly painless process. However, just a couple of years into the car’s lifespan, Volvo has fettled the XC40 Recharge again with new batteries and power units for 2024. It’s also worth noting that the model will be known as the EX40 from this year onwards.   

Volvo’s taken the decision, just a few years into the XC40’s life, to move its electric motor. Single Motor cars now feature their motor on the rear axle, instead of the front, with a corresponding shift to rear-wheel drive from the previous front-wheel drive. The brand’s executed this change on the closely-related C40, too, and sister brand Polestar has done the same to its Polestar 2.

The move makes the cars significantly more efficient on paper, and improves the range of the Single Motor models by a few miles. The Twin Motor has also had an upgrade, now featuring a beefier rear motor and a significant boost in range making it more than competitive with most of its premium rivals.

Otherwise, it’s business as usual for the XC40 Recharge – which means you get a comfortable, pleasant-to-drive electric car with a clever and family-friendly interior. Rivals include the Mercedes-Benz EQA, Tesla Model Y and Hyundai Ioniq 5 – the premium electric compact SUV market is a hotly contested space, so it’s good that the XC40 now has the range to compete.

The XC40 Recharge is available in Single or Twin Motor variants, and a choice of three trim levels – Core, Plus, and Ultimate. All feature a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster and 9.0-inch portrait-oriented infotainment screen running the slick and feature-packed Android Automotive. A powered tailgate, rear parking sensors and full LED lights are standard, while Plus models feature Pilot Assist driving aids, keyless entry and a few other convenience features.

Range-topping Ultimate models gain a panoramic roof, Harman Kardon sound system and the option of a wool interior fabric package – one that really lifts the car’s ambiance and makes it feel like a true miniature luxury SUV.

From the middle of 2024, the electric XC40 is being renamed to the EX40, though the two cars are almost indentical. You can read more about this new car and what differences have been made in our dedicated Volvo EX40 review.

Want to know more? Keep reading for our full Volvo XC40 Recharge review, where we’ll rank the car’s interior, practicality, driving dynamics and running costs before offering a final verdict.