Volvo C40 Recharge

Twin Plus

Volvo C40 Recharge, 2022, front, action
Volvo C40 Recharge, 2022, front
Volvo C40 Recharge, 2022, side
Volvo C40 Recharge, 2022, interior
Volvo C40 Recharge, 2022, charging point
Volvo C40 Recharge, 2022, rear seats
Volvo C40 Recharge, 2022, front boot, frunk
Volvo C40 Recharge, 2022, boot
Volvo C40 Recharge, 2022, rear

IT'S a seriously big shout for Volvo to expect half of its global sales to consist of fully electric cars in just two years time, ahead of becoming fully electric by 2030.

But in the C40 Recharge, the company's second fully electric model, the Swedish brand has a perfect product to help keep them a step ahead of the competition.

And we're talking premium rivals that really mean business, like the Audi Q4 Sportback e-tron, Jaguar I-Pace, Mercedes-Benz EQA and Tesla Model 3 long Range.

Of course none of them come cheap and the Volvo C40 recharge is no exception, costing from £48,355 online or by paying a £699 a month subscription.

What you get for this hard-earned dosh though is something fresh, squeaky clean, green and premium - as well as being extremely desirable.

For starters, this Volvo may be based on its stablemate the XC40 Recharge SUV, but it's an altogether slicker-looking vehicle - officially a compact crossover but in truth displaying a more low slung, coupe-like style.

It comes in the three equipment levels of Core, Plus - which adds £5,550 to the price - and Ultimate (an extra £9,200) with the choice of single or twin motors and rear or all-wheel drive.

Our twin motor version produces a combined 402bhp and, not surprisingly with that amount of wallop, a pretty sensational 0-62mph acceleration time of 4.7 seconds.

Use that potential on a regular basis and you aren't going to get anywhere near the impressive 273 miles claimed by Volvo on a full charge, though using the car's single pedal driving function will save energy through regenerative braking.

Lifting off the throttle instantly slows the car to an eventual halt. Thankfully you can switch it on and off - it feels unsettling at first and we mainly had it disconnected.

Otherwise the C40 Recharge is a smooth, silent and relaxing car to pilot - it's also hi-tech from the moment you step aboard. With no need for an ignition key or start button the Volvo springs to life the second backside hits driving seat.

Out on the road it feels agile, well balanced and while there's a touch of body roll the whole driving experience is nonetheless one of assured refinement.

That goes for the interior too, where everything from the minimalist layout to the degree of passenger space is meticulously planned and delivered.

Space-wise there's plenty of room up front and space for three across the back, though it can prove a bit tight if all the rear passengers are adults. The rear seats also split/fold and there's reasonable space in the boot too.

The only downside concerns rear visibility, which is a postbox view due to the car's slanting back end.

Standard kit is comprehensive and all models highlight 100 per cent leather-free materials and include a new Android-based infotainment system with four years of data.

Operated using a nine-inch central touchscreen, it provides Google Maps with worldwide coverage, voice control, access to apps and smartphone integration via Apple CarPlay.

Buyers also get automatic LED headlights with Active High Beam, dual-zone climate control, wireless phone charging, a 12.3-inch driver's info display, powered tailgate, panoramic roof, rear parking sensors and 19-inch alloy wheels.

Our tested Plus model, in a fetching Thunder Grey paint job, added desirable features like power-adjustable and heated front seats, blind spot and cross traffic alert and a pin-sharp 360-degree parking camera.

FAST FACTS

Volvo C40 Recharge Twin Plus

Price:£53,905

Mechanical:408bhp, 78kW battery plus electric motors driving four wheels via automatic transmission

Max Speed:112mph

0-62mph:4.7 secs

Combined MPG:273 miles

Insurance Group:43

C02 emissions:0g/km

Bik rating:2%

Warranty:3yrs/60,000 miles (8yrs/100,000 for battery)

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