As fuel prices soar and more cities and states look to incentivize hybrids and EVs, the United States continues to see more all-electric vehicles. The Volvo C40 Recharge is Volvo’s first all-electric crossover-style SUV that packs some impressive features, setting it apart from the other EVs available on the market.
Thanks to strong specifications and an efficient electric motor, it offers a long-range and a fun driving experience with a bunch of new tech. In this article, we’ll look at the Volvo C40 Recharge in-depth to see if it’s the best EV for your budget, as well as what features and exciting new tech comes with the crossover.
5 Facts About the Volvo C40 Recharge
- The C40 Recharge is modeled on Volvo’s Compact Modular Architecture (CMA) platform, designed to accommodate hybrid and fully electric powertrains.
- The C40 Recharge is based on the XC40 Recharge but features a coup-style roof.
- The C40 Recharge can be charged up to about 80% in 40 minutes using a fast charger.
- Volvo has announced that the C40 Recharge will be available through Volvo Care, a subscription model that packages the C40 Recharge with Volvo’s insurance, maintenance, and more.
- The Volvo C40 Recharge features the Android Automotive OS.
Volvo C40 EV: Specifications
|Max Range||226 Miles Per Charge|
|Weight||2185 kg / 4817 lbs|
|0-60 MPH Time||4.5 Seconds|
|Top Speed||111 Miles-Per-Hour|
Volvo C40 EV: Where to Buy
The first models of Volvo’s C40 EV came out in October of 2021 in the United States and Europe. Since then, Volvo has updated the C40 with the release of the 2023 C40 Recharge in late 2022.
The C40 Recharge starts at $56,395, with the Plus trim costing $57,945, and the Ultimate trim costing $61,195. As of Spring 2023, the C40 Recharge is available in the United States and is available for pre-order in Europe.
All of the advanced driving assistance systems, which include the Pilot Assist feature, allowing you to have a semi-autonomous driving experience, will cost you extra at checkout with the C40 Recharge.
Volvo C40 EV: What to Know
Volvo started as Sweden’s first car manufacturer in 1927 and, by 1950, was one of Europe’s most reputable car brands in terms of durability and safety. Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, Volvo expanded into one of the world’s largest automotive manufacturers, growing its production beyond just cars by manufacturing buses and trucks.
In 1990, Volvo was acquired by Ford Motor Company, but it has remained a distinct brand within Ford ever since. If you were a kid in the 1980s, your parents very well might have had the iconic boxy station wagon that was the Volvo 240.
If you started driving in the late ’90s to mid-2000s, you or someone you knew probably knew someone who drove a Volvo 850, one of the most durable and long-lasting cars of the period.
These old cars solidified Volvo’s reputation as a safe and reliable car that didn’t break your budget. Fast forward to today, and the company is on the cutting edge of EV technology, competing with the likes of Tesla, Lucid, and even luxury brands like Mercedes and Audi.
Volvo unveiled the C40 Recharge in March of 2021, and production started later that year in June at the company’s Ghent factory in Belgium. By September of 2021, the first C40 Recharges hit the streets throughout Europe and the United States.
Volvo C40 EV: Design and Construction
The Volvo C40 uses Volvo’s Compact Modular Architecture, or CMA, a design that accommodates both hybrid and all-electric vehicles. The C40 Recharge is a crossover SUV with a coup-style roof, giving the EV a stylish and sporty look that we appreciate for an EV.
The front grille features a black finish, adding some contrast to the look of the front. There’s also the Volvo signature “Thors Hammer” LED headlights. Volvo went with lightweight materials in constructing the C40 Recharge. There’s aluminum and high-strength steel, simultaneously allowing the EV to be light and sturdy.
The 78 kWh battery is mounted in the floor’s center, improving handling by lowering the EV’s center of gravity. This low center of gravity, together with a sporty-looking design, offers a high-performance and eco-friendly driving experience while maintaining a beautiful coup-style roof.
Volvo C40 EV: Performance
With the C40 Recharge, you get a high-performance vehicle designed to drive smoothly and quietly without sacrificing power or handling. Featuring a dual-motor electric powertrain that delivers 402 horsepower, coupled with 482 pound-per-foot of torque, the C40 Recharge has quick and responsive acceleration, going 0-60 in just 4.5 seconds.
This is one fast EV, and one of the fastest cars in Volvo’s lineup, including gas vehicles. However, a benefit that you don’t get with Volvo’s gasoline vehicles: when traveling at 60 mph in the C40 Recharge, drivers note that it does so without any of the noise and vibrations associated with conventional gasoline-powered cars.
A quiet ride is to be expected from an EV, but Volvo takes it to the next level, with significant effort dedicated to sound-dampening the entire car. Even the roar of the tires is subtle and unobtrusive.
Additionally, the torque allows for some pretty fun driving scenarios, as the C40 Recharge can take turns quickly without the need for too much brake pressure. Acceleration and deceleration are a breeze thanks to the all-electric design of the car.
Volvo C40 EV: Range and Recharging
As an all-electric SUV, the Volvo C40 Recharge gets a surprisingly good range thanks to the 78 kWh battery pack that powers the dual motor system to deliver a combined output of 402 horsepower. The C40 Recharge has an EPA-rated 226 miles of range on a single charge.
However, several reviewers and test drivers have noted that the C40 Recharge can go anywhere from 10 to 14% further than the official EPA rating, averaging about a 250-mile range on a single charge.
Recharging the C40 is simple and easy. The EV can be recharged at home to full using a level 2 charger. For faster charging, though, the C40 Recharge is compatible with DC fast chargers, allowing the battery to get up to 80% in 40 minutes. Additionally, the C40 Recharge features an 11 kW onboard charger, allowing faster charging when using standard Level 2 chargers.
Volvo C40 EV: Interior
Taking a look inside the cabin, Volvo has gone with a minimalist and clean interior. The cabin is spacious and airy, with ample legroom in the front, although the coup-styling does restrict a bit of headroom and legroom for backseat passengers.
The vinyl seats are supportive and stylish with a charcoal headliner. At the same time, the floor mats are a tightly woven cerulean carpet paired with suede microfiber, giving a cerulean-blue aesthetic to the interior of the C40 Recharge.
In addition to the clean look of the interior, the C40 Recharge features a tinted panoramic sunroof which enhances the sense of spaciousness while providing some extra natural light into the cabin without any distracting glare.
The Recharge 40 features generous storage, with four cupholders and large bins in each door. Each armrest has small trays, and the charging pad is wide enough for multiple phones to charge simultaneously in the center console. However, the trunk is quite small, offering roughly the size you would find in a midsize sedan.
Volvo C40 EV: Technology
The Volvo C40 is absolutely jam-packed with cool tech, so let’s go over each aspect in a little more detail.
The centerpiece of the C40 Recharge’s interior is the 9-inch touchscreen infotainment, integrated with Volvo’s latest software platform, providing seamless and distraction-free connectivity to various digital services.
The system is compatible with voice control, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and Bluetooth connectivity, providing a distraction-free driving experience.
The infotainment center is fast and responsive and features a few AI-based features to make things like selecting destinations quicker, showering, charging stopovers, and estimating battery percentages for the entire trip, even round trip.
Driver Assistance System
Another notable piece of tech within the C40 Recharge are the advanced driver assistance systems, which include features such as adaptive cruise control, lane departure warnings, as well as blind-spot monitoring and alerts.
Additionally, the C40 Recharge features a 360-degree camera system that provides a bird’s-eye view of the EV’s surroundings, making it easier to maneuver into tight parking spaces. Regarding the eco-friendliness of the C40 Recharge, the EV also features regenerative braking, which helps the C40 Recharge beat the EPA range rating.
If you opt for all of the advanced driving assistant systems, you can take advantage of Pilot Assist, which connects cruise control with lane-centering, giving you a semi-autonomous driving experience — great on freeways and fast highways.
There’s also a range of features designed to enhance your comfort and convenience when driving the C40 Recharge. There’s a premium 13-speaker sound system from Harmon Kardon, which comes equipped with a powerful subwoofer. Volvo also includes a wireless charging pad, ambient cabin lighting, and a panoramic sunroof.
Some reviewers have noted that the seats aren’t the most comfortable, but are supportive and adjustable enough. Compared to previous Volvos, the seats are a bit smaller and give off a more rigid feeling; but they should be comfortable enough for you to find your ideal driving position.
The C40 Recharge utilizes coup-styling, so the back seat is relatively cramped, especially for taller adults. We would have liked to see the panoramic sunroof be able to open like a sunroof; unfortunately, it doesn’t. If you want an EV that can seat seven or more, you have plenty of other options.
The Recharge C40 comes with Android Automotive, a feature that allows you to access and control your Android smartphone through the infotainment system. If you use Google Assistant, Google Calendar, Contacts, and Maps, everything is responsive and available via the infotainment system.
Maps, in particular, highlight the C40 Recharge, showing you accurate range estimates to your destination and suggesting charging stopovers during your route.
Volvo C40 EV: The Public Response
The response to the C40 Recharge has been generally positive, with many reviewers praising the EV’s sleek design, advanced technology features, and environmental credentials. Additionally, automotive journalists have spoken brightly of the C40 Recharge’s comfortable interior and impressive all-electric range.
Sales for the Recharge models were around 27% of all of Volvo’s car sales in 2021. As more data comes regarding sales figures for 2022, we expect this number to be even higher thanks to the C40 Recharge’s style and affordability compared to other electric vehicles of its standard; primarily against the Tesla Model Y, which starts around an extra $10,000.
The C40 Recharge is the first all-electric vehicle to be released by Volvo and is part of the company’s strategy to become a fully carbon-neutral company by 2040. We would expect to see a few more all-electric and electric-hybrid models from Volvo in the coming years as the market and excitement grow worldwide for all-electric vehicles.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©ben bryant/Shutterstock.com.