Volvo has completed a crucial phase of its so-far impressive comeback run by introducing its third crossover model, the XC40.
Joining the XC90, a previous DNA Award winner, and the equally impressive XC60, the 2019 Volvo XC40 is the smallest and final member of Swedish automaker’s global SUV lineup.
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Unlike its two bigger siblings, which use Volvo’s Scalable Product Architecture, the XC40 is the first vehicle built on Compact Modular Architecture, a similar standardized platform that will be used on the brand’s future 40 Series models, including purpose-built pure-electric vehicles.
As the brand’s entry-level crossover, the XC40 will implement cost-saving measures, including an all-new three-cylinder engine, as well as millennial-focused features such as the new Care by Volvo subscription service.
Familial traits—including its own take on a wide grille, Thor’s hammer LED headlights and jagged, vertical taillights—tie the XC40 to Volvo’s previously redesigned XC90, XC60, S90 and V90. All five vehicles also have similar profiles as well, with flat noses, level hoods and angular rooflines.
Unlike its predecessors, the XC40 offers off-color roofs in either white or black and a more squat D-pillar design that’s indicative of its lower profile. Inside is a smaller version of the Sensus infotainment system and a more compact rear seating area.
Everything inside the XC40 is scaled down compared to the 90 and 60 series vehicles, including the opulence, meaning no two-tone steering wheel or wooden trim pieces. However, in classic Volvo fashion, the XC40 does not skimp out on safety features, as it promises to offer Pilot Assist, City Safety and Run-off Road driver assistance features as well as 360-degree camera.
To make up for the loss of rear cargo space, Volvo is experimenting with new storage alternatives by adding storage room in the doors, below the seats and in the center console, which also offers a removable trash bin—something any road tripper can appreciate.
Volvo will start this November building the XC40 in its Ghent, Belgium plant with a T5 gas-powered four-cylinder as well as a D4 diesel option, although it’s not clear if that will be available in the U.S. It will also offer a three-cylinder engine, and eventually a hybrid powertrain and a fully-electric version, as well.
As part of its appeal to younger buyers, Volvo has streamlined the leasing process of the XC40 into a subscription-like Care by Volvo service. Leases are 24 months, pre-negotiated and include no down payment, taxes or hidden fees. Everything, including insurance, is rolled into a flat monthly fee and vehicles can be ordered online.
Care by Volvo also offers a concierge service that can handle fueling, cleaning and service delivery of the car. The brand hopes to expand the scope of this service and apply to other vehicles as well. The idea behind it is to create a transparent, simple process that is consistent regardless of factors such as geographical location or customer age.
First Pictures: 2019 Volvo XC40
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