Order books opened today for Volvo’s first all-electric car – the XC40 Recharge Pure Electric P8 compact sports utility vehicle – costing from £53,155.
That’s more than twice the price of the cheapest petrol-powered XC40 currently on sale.
It is the first of five electric cars to be launched by the Swedish car firm over the next five years, with first UK deliveries expected to start in early 2021.
Twice the price: Volvo has confirmed the XC40 Recharge Pure Electric P8 compact sports utility vehicle – its first electric car – will cost from £53,155. That’s more than double the cost of the most basic petrol-powered XC40
Powered by twin electric motors producing 408hp it accelerates from 0-62mph in just 4.9 seconds. All Volvos how have their top speed limited to 112mph.
With a claimed range of more than 249 miles on a single charge, Volvo bosses say it is more than sufficient for the average UK daily drive which averages around 30 miles.
Nevertheless, anyone planning a long distance journey – such as, say, a 260 mile trek from London to Durham – would have to plan a recharge stop en route.
The new XC40 Recharge Pure Electric P8 does not qualify for the Government’s taxpayer-funded £3,000 plug in car grant (reduced in the budget from £3,500) as this is now capped at £50,000.
That means buyers will have to fork out the full asking price of £53,155.
That compares to the £25,295 price tag for the XC40 T2 petrol with front-wheel drive, which produces between 158 and 173g/km CO2 compared to the Recharge’s zero emissions.
Volvo’s radical electric push: The Swedish brand’s dealer network by default will assume customers want electric models when available. Buyers will need to specify if they want a petrol or hybrid
The XC40 Recharge can charge to 80% in around 40 minutes on a powerful (150kW) fast-charger or about 7.5 hours on a low-power (11Kw) domestic charger
As you can see, there’s no engine under the bonnet of this XC40 – which has been an award-collecting success since it launched
The Swedish firm which is owned by Chinese car giant Geely, says batteries will reach 80 per cent of capacity in 40 minutes on a fast charge.
Available initially in R-Design specification, it is the first Volvo to include the Google Android-powered infotainment system.
The absence of an internal combustion petrol or diesel engine means extra storage space for the family.
An additional 30-litre storage compartment – dubbed a front trunk or ‘frunk’ sits under the front bonnet – while placing batteries under the centre of the car means space is not compromised elsewhere.
Volvo Cars also said that it is aiming aims for plug-in petrol-electric hybrid cars to make up 20% of total sales in 2020
The vehicle is powered by 300kW electric motor supplemented by a 48kw battery
The firm said: ‘Being an electric car, it will deliver significant savings to owners in running costs, as well as tax benefits.’
Petrol versions of the XC40 were launched in 2018 and that year car won the prestigious European Car of the Year award.
Volvo said: ‘The XC40 Recharge Pure Electric marks a major milestone in Volvo Cars’ electrification strategy, which is one of the boldest from any traditional car maker. As part of a long-term ambition to be climate-neutral by 2040, the company aims to reduce tailpipe emissions by 50% per car, and for half of all new vehicles it sells globally to be pure electric, by 2025.’
The firm says its customers are already able to purchase a plug-in hybrid version of every model in the Volvo range. The recently launched plug-in hybrid XC40 has a 28-mile pure electric rang.
A poll by AutoTrader suggests almost three quarters of consumers would ‘consider’ an electric car for their next purchase’.
Clever interior touches include a removable waste bin, a fold-out hook in the glove compartment for bags, and a useful boot divider complete with hooks for keeping shopping bags separate and upright.
Door linings and carpets made from 97 per cent recycled plastic bottles.
A pair of large front door bins replace loudspeakers traditionally stored in the doors which have been moved to the base of the windscreen.
The XC40 Recharge promises a range of more than 248 miles (400km) on a full charge
The new XC40 Recharge is also the first Volvo with a brand new infotainment system powered by Google’s Android operating system
For the first time on a Volvo car, software and operating system updates will be available over the air,.
Volvo said its engineers had made the electric XC40 ‘one of the safest cars on the market.‘
It said: ’Our safety engineers have totally redeveloped the frontal crash structure, while introducing a new and unique safety structure for the passengers and battery – helping to keep occupants as safe as they are in any other Volvo.’
The XC40 Recharge Pure Electric is also the first Volvo to feature a new version of ‘Pilot Assist’ driver-assistance technology that deploys steering, acceleration and braking support to help take the strain during long motorway journeys and sitting in traffic. The system now uses Google Maps for information such as speed limits and curves in the road to improve its functionality.
A new ‘Emergency Stop Assist’ function brings the car to a safe stop, after a series of warning, if the the driver is not holding the steering wheel.
Volvo Car UK’s managing director Kristian Elvefors said: ‘For Volvo Cars, the future is electric. The battery-powered XC40 spearheads our ambitious sustainability strategy, while bringing the huge benefits of electric driving – and more – to an already award-winning package.’
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