Tuesday 19 November 2019

Volvo's small SUV - XC40 - ushers in era of digital keys and special deals

Volvo xc40
Volvo xc40
Eddie Cunningham

Eddie Cunningham

Volvo's new XC40 compact SUV goes on sale here from January.

However, it will just have all-wheel-drive from the start as part of a D4 AWD automatic package that kicks off from €47,450. There will be more engines in May and, we're told, two-wheel-drive versions.

I saw the concept car on which this is based some time back and in fairness to them they seem to have kept the 'spirit' and substance of the original, admittedly more radical, look.

Coinciding with the new car is a subscription service called 'Care by Volvo' which, for a set amount each month, covers everything from servicing to concierge access to your repayments.

Irish buyers will have a chance to check what that involves in everyday practice towards the end of next year.

Conceivably, you will be able to share your Volvo, if you so wish, thanks to a new digital key - from late spring.

Instead of a physical key you'll get an app on your mobile.

The Bluetooth-enabled app will do everything a physical key currently does.

But it also means you can receive more than one digital key on your app, possibly allowing you access to Volvos in different locations, all things being equal.

The XC40 is the first model on their new modular vehicle architecture (CMA). This will underpin all future '40 series' cars.

Safety and driver assistance elements include Pilot Assist, Run-off Road protection and mitigation, City Safety, Cross Traffic alert with brake support and a 360° camera.

They worked hard on generating and using internal storage. There is more space in the doors and under the seats, as well as slots for phones (including inductive charging).

They also have a fold-out hook for small bags as well as a removable waste bin in the tunnel console.

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