Archive for July, 2015|Monthly archive page

Volvo V40 D2

In Volvo on July 23, 2015 at 8:22 pm

As a teenager I devoured motoring magazines, and picked up a hefty bias against safe boxy cars from Sweden.

Once I was in my mid-forties my preconceptions were challenged, as I kept hearing great things about the new “D5” 163 bhp 2.5 litre diesel engine.

Not much later I was happily behind the wheel of a 42 mpg Volvo V70 that had every conceivable extra, including an in built TV.

In the intervening years we’ve had two C30s, and a 240 estate. Last week I found myself behind the wheel of the sharply styled V40.

V40 9

Here’s my impressions of the Volvo’s answer to the VW Golf.  My impressions were formed during 2500 miles in the car, and once again proved you can believe everything the journalists say.V40 5

The truth is many motoring hacks have been pretty dismissive of the V40, which is designed to replace the old C30, and V50s which have now gone out of production.

V40 4

Back when this car was launched it was slated for a poor steering lock, and hard suspension.  There were even suggestions that it wasn’t all that reliable.V40 10

You take pot luck with hire cars, so I admit that I was a little disappointed my machine for the week was the least powerful (115 bhp) oil burner, and worst still it came with a manual gearbox.V40 4

In truth it didn’t take long for me to adjust.

Like most modern diesels this one seemed to be torquey, and flexible once above 20 mph.

My daily drive has about 50% more power, but I didn’t feel short changed even when looking to overtake on Scotland’s  wet A roads.

I can give you 40 reasons to buy a V40, and I’m sure you won’t be disappointed.

1. Legendary Volvo Comfort.

2. High levels of adjustment afford a perfect driving position.

3. Heated Seats.

4. Leather.

5. Brilliant high tech instrument panel.

6. Better diversion options on the Sat Nav that my frequently inaccurate BMW system.

7. Good climate control.

8. Sculpted rear seats.

9. Room for one more passenger than the little C30.

10. 56.6 mpg whilst averaging over 40 mph.

11. Active Xenon Headlights.

12. Pretty triple “shark teeth” screen washer nozzles.

13. Folding front passenger seat to give a larger cargo area (or in my case more room to sleep).

14. Refreshingly different styling.

15. A surprisingly large boot.

16. Flat floor to the boot.

17. Cubby hole under the boot floor.

18. Great handling.

19. Zippy steering.

20. More engaging than a BMW 3 Series ED.

21. DAB radio works well.

22. A CD player for audio books.

23. Secure clips that hold the floor mats in place.

24. Sound Quality – out performs BMW.

24. Trendy rearview mirror.

25. Alloy wheels (even on the slowest version).

26. Unlike the C30 there’s a proper parcel shelf which can easily hide your luggage AND make way for luggage.

27. Two cup holders.

28. No rattles!

29. Overall Refinement.

30. Wonderfully un-German.

31. Plentiful engine options.  Even the least powerful has plenty of poke.

32. It offers the owner a sense of individuality, rather than lumping them in with the crowd.

33. Better than equivalent Merc A Class.

34. Prettier than a BMW 1 Series.

35. Safer than pretty much any other competitor.

36. It looks down the road, and will brake if you miss something!

37. Chunky steering wheel.

38. Gorgeous Head Restraints – beautifully styled, and (in the rear) easily folded for better visibility.

39. Cubby hole phone charger point.

40. Sliding centre armrest.