Toyota finally has its first mass-produced electric vehicle, the bZ4X. Even though it joins an ever-growing segment of non-luxury EV SUVs, it is still a significant step for the company and an excellent option for Toyota lovers who have been waiting for an EV from the brand. Well, there was the RAV4 EV, but it has been shelved, leaving the bZ4X as the only EV from the brand.
At the same time, Volvo has revamped its XC40 SUV for the 2023 reentry. Though some of the differences are obvious, this new generation of the XC40 fairly compares with the bZ4X.
Let’s take an in-depth review of their differences, similarities, and figure out which one may be best for you.
Volvo XC40 vs.Toyota bZ4X: Side-by-Side Comparison
|Toyota bZ4X||Volvo XC40|
|EPA Rating (City/Highway)||131/109 MPGe||24/32 mpg|
|Powertrain||FWD and AWD||FWD and AWD|
|Powertrain Warranty||5 years/60,000 miles||4 years/50,000 miles|
Toyota bZ4X vs. Volvo XC40: What’s the Difference?
Fuel type is the main difference between the two SUVs. The Toyota bZ4X is a pure EV, while the 2023 Volvo XC40 is a fuel-powered subcompact SUV with a mild hybrid powertrain. However, there is a full EV version, the XC40 Recharge, which is a different model altogether.
Features and Trims
This car comes in two trims: XLE and Limited. Both trims are available in either single-motor or dual-motor powertrains configured with front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive, respectively. However, the FWD is the standard option in both trim levels, with the upgrade to AWD costing an extra $2,080.
The standard features on the bZ4X are a panoramic glass roof, a 12.3-inch touchscreen, wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, a six-speaker stereo, a 7-inch digital gauge, and five USB ports. It also has several safety features coming as standard, including a lane-departure warning with steering assist, automatic high-beam headlights, automatic brake assists, and blind spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert.
The Limited trim level gets interior ambient lighting, a power liftgate, a heated steering wheel, heated and ventilated front seats, and a digital key, among other luxurious features.
The 2023 Volvo XC40 comes with one extra trim option more than the bZ4X, including the Core, Plus, and Ultimate trim levels. It also offers two engine options for all the trim levels, the B4 and the B5, which are paired with FWD and AWD drivetrains, respectively.
For features, the base trim comes with heated front seats, cloth upholstery, a 9-inch touchscreen, a 12-inch instrument digital display, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, an 8-speaker stereo, Bluetooth, and many more.
The standard safety features are similar to those of the bZ4X and include forward collision warning, automatic-braking assist, lane-keep assist, and blind spot monitoring. The Plus trim gets a power-adjustable passenger seat, front parking sensor, keyless entry, and a panoramic moonroof. Adaptive cruise control, side parking sensors, and Pilot Assist are only available on the top trim.
Power and Performance
The single-motor FWD option of the bZ4X delivers 201 hp, while the more powerful dual-motor AWD version offers 215 hp. Irrespective of the drivetrain, the bZ4X is powered by a 71.4kWh battery, which, according to the automaker, has an estimated mileage of 242 miles. Reviews show you can get up to 317 miles, but that would require small wheels, FWD, and a feather-light right foot.
In terms of acceleration, the bZ4X has a 0-60mph runtime of 6.4 or 7.5 seconds on AWD or FWD, respectively. This certainly is not the fastest in the class, but it is good enough unless you are planning to go drag racing with the bZ4X.
Regardless of your chosen engine, the XC40 will always deliver more power than the Toyota bZ4X, thanks to its turbocharged engines. The smallest engine in the lineup is the B4, a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine with 194 hp. The high-power B5 engine can deliver up to 247 hp. Both engines come with a 48-volt hybrid system, which helps boost fuel economy.
On its drift capacity, the Volvo XC40 with the B5 engine takes 6.1 seconds to sprint from 0-60mph. It is certainly faster than the bZ4X, even though it can still not take on Tesla and other luxury models in the segment.
Range and Fuel Economy
The Toyota bZ4X has a 131 MPGe and 107 MPGe rating in the city and highway, respectively. However, in the real world, you are most likely to get a lower economy, usually about 90 MPGe, which is equivalent to about 75 MPG.
The Volvo XC40 has an EPA rating of 24 MPG in the city and 32 mpg on the highway for the B4 engine. It drops to about 23 MPG and 30 MPG with the B5 engine. Even though these are much lower than the EVs, it’s not surprising that the model is still very competitive compared to fuel-powered models in the same category.
Comfort and Cargo Space
The bZ4X has comfortable seats with sufficient legroom for long rides. However, taller passengers might find the headroom in the rear seats slightly cramped. On storage, the bZ4X has about 28 cubic feet of cargo space at the back, which can be expanded to 56.1 cubics by folding the rear seats.
Upfront, the Volvo XC40 is very comfortable, but the same cannot be said of the back seats. The rear seats are low-slung, meaning that tall occupants will have to sit in an awkwardly uncomfortable knee-up position. The cargo space is meager, about 20.7 cubic feet, but folding the rear seats increases it to 57.5 cubic feet.
For the bZ4X, Toyota offers a Limited warranty of 3 years or 36,000 miles, and a powertrain warranty of five years or 60,000 miles. bZ4X owners will also enjoy an above average of 8 years, or 100,000 miles, of warranty on electrical components and complimentary maintenance for two years, or 25,000 miles.
The Volvo XC40 comes with a 4-year, or 50,000 miles, limited warranty and a powertrain warranty of similar terms. Volvo also covers scheduled complimentary maintenance for three years, or 36,000 miles.
Toyota bZ4X vs. Volvo XC40: What are the Similarities?
Even though the two models differ in many ways, they also share certain core features. For example, they are both 5-seater compact SUVs, share most of the safety features, and have FWD and AWD drivetrains available for all trim levels. The two models also have several connectivity and infotainment features in common such as smartphone mirroring compatibility using Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.
Volvo XC40 vs. Toyota bZ4X: 6 Must-Know Facts
- The Toyota bZ4X is an all-new nameplate on the Toyota lineup, while the 2023 Volvo XC40 is the fifth generation of the model since its debut in 2019.
- The Toyota bZ4X is based on the e-TNGA platform, new Toyota’s global architecture for electric cars. The XC40 is based on Volvo’s compact modular architecture, CMA.
- The 2023 Volvo XC40 lineup does not have the T4, T5, and diesel engine options.
- Though the 2023 Volvo XC40 retains the 9-inch touchscreen, it has an upgraded Google-based infotainment system with integration for Google Maps, Google Assistant, and Google Play.
- Toyota co-developed the bZ4X with Subaru, which makes it a twin to Subaru’s Solterra, except that the Solterra is 4WD, comes only with a dual motor configuration, and is pricier.
- Toyota is offering an astounding 620,000 miles battery warranty on the bZ4X.
Volvo XC40 vs. Toyota bZ4X: Pros and Cons
|A generous list of standard features||Lacks one-pedal drive mode|
|Decent range||No real unique selling point|
|Excellent offroad capability|
|Smooth ride quality|
|Modern design||Small cargo capacity|
|A generous list of standard features||Steep learning curve when using the touchscreen|
|High-quality materials on the interior||Missing the luxurious touch of larger Volvos|
|Clever storage options and solutions|
Toyota bZ4X vs. Volvo XC40: Which One Wins?
If you want an eco-friendly, zero-emission car, the Toyota bZ4X wins automatically. However, if you are staying where the charging networks are few and far and need to use the car regularly, settle for the fuel-powered XC40.
If you don’t mind either EV or gas-powered, then carefully read the next paragraphs.
The bZ4X is a competent, well-built car with a spacious interior, decent drive, and an efficient battery. Therefore, if you prefer an electric version of a RAV4, this car is for you. Plus, it has several technologies and driver assist features as a standard. Also, given Toyota’s reputation, you can trust that the bZ4X will be a reliable EV.
The new generation of Volvo XC40 is equally impressive, with a stylish exterior that easily sets it apart from the competition. It also has a tech-packed interior. The mild hybrid powertrain gives it better fuel efficiency than most of its rivals. Also, the starting price for the base model is about $6,000 cheaper than that for the bZ4X.
The Toyota wins on environmental grounds and reliability, while the Volvo carries the day when appearance, power, and price are the primary consideration.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©ginger_polina_bublik/Shutterstock.com.