Can Volvoâ€™s latest compact SUV take on and beat Audiâ€™s Q3 or BMWâ€™s X1?
Volvo used to be known for big estates. Now, almost by accident, itâ€™s become an important player in the world of SUVs.
TheÂ XC40Â is Volvo’s latest effort in this still madly-growing market. Smaller than theÂ XC60Â andÂ XC90, and sitting on a totally new chassis, itâ€™s aimed squarely at small SUVs such as theÂ Audi Q3,Â BMW X1Â andÂ Jaguar E-Pace.
Rather than attempting to be a copy of those bigger Volvos, the XC40 has a funky style of its own. The external and internal design is bold, and although the XC40 is pretty conventional in many ways, the way it drives isnâ€™t.
Volvo hasnâ€™t made the mistake of trying to make it sporty. Instead, theyâ€™ve given it a more chilled vibe and a relaxed feel thatâ€™s quite unusual in this class. Itâ€™s useable too, with plenty of room for both passengers and cargo and a good degree of designed-in practicality. This is all a refreshing change from some of the style-heavy (and not so practical) SUVs on offer from other manufacturers. It puts the U back into SUV â€“Â and itâ€™s a good looking car too.
The XC40 2.0 D4 in the Momentum guise you see here will be about Â£35,000 in the UK. We like it.