6 key details about the 2019 Volvo XC40

Volvo's newest small SUV is poised to compete with the Audi Q3, BMW X1, and Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class.

2019 Volvo XC40
The exterior styling of the 2018 Volvo XC40. –Volvo

Volvo is experiencing something of a renaissance. The Swedish automaker once associated with boxy styling and practicality has ushered in a new era of style, technology, and efficiency with models like the S90, V90, XC90, and XC60. One thing missing from the lineup was a compact crossover SUV.

Enter the 2019 Volvo XC40, which features a head-turning design and is sure to pack the latest safety technology. The XC40 will need it to take on the growing class of luxury subcompact SUVs, including the Audi Q3, BMW X1, Land Rover Range Rover Evoque, and Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class.

The Volvo XC40 goes in sale in summer 2018. Here are a few key details to know about this new crossover SUV.

1. It’s pushing Volvo’s styling cues.


After briefly embracing a curvier design aesthetic, Volvo is back to sharp angles and creases, as evidenced by the designs of the Volvo X90, V90, and XC90. The XC40 took those cues and scaled them down with impressive results. Perhaps the best attribute is the upright styling, which yields a commanding driving position, plenty of headroom, and optimized visibility — one of the great complaints among modern crossovers.

The XC40 has similar styling cues to the range-topping XC90. —George Kennedy

2. It’s built on a new platform.

The XC40 rides on Volvo’s Compact Modular Architecture, which will underpin other future small vehicles. This is important because small cars represent a pretty big gap in Volvo’s lineup. The C30 was discontinued in 2013, the S40 left the market in 2012, and the S60 has been riding on the same platform since 2011, with only minor updates through the years. Volvo is in dire need of some smaller offerings, and this all-new platform will lead the way.

Boston.com Dealer Specials:
The Sensus infotainment system is very intuitive. —Volvo

3. Inside, it features some serious tech.

Much like the exterior, the interior is like a scaled-down version of the XC90, and in the best ways possible. The cabin is clean and loaded with technology, but it’s not over-burdened with buttons and toggles. The center is dominated by a large touchscreen with the Sensus infotainment system.

The XC40 will also offer the enhanced connectivity of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as well as wireless charging for equipped phones.

Volvo’s City Safety is an advanced collision avoidance system. —Volvo

4. It has a host of safety features.


The XC40 will come standard with City Safety, a collision-avoidance system that can detect pedestrians, cyclists, other vehicles, and even large animals. Like many other emergency braking systems, it will first alert the driver, then engage the brakes if no action is taken.

Available safety technology will include Pilot Assist (a semi-autonomous driving feature), lane-departure warning, rear cross-traffic alert, and a 360-degree camera.

5. It has efficient powertrains.

The XC40 will be offered with Volvo’s T5 Drive-E powertrain, which is a turbocharged 2.0-liter, inline four-cylinder. In other Volvos, it makes 240 horsepower and 258 pound feet of torque. Volvo will first offer this engine with all-wheel drive.

In the summer of 2018, Volvo will introduce a T4 front-wheel-drive model, which will be less expensive. While the T4 will also pack a 2.0-liter turbocharged engine, it will likely make between 180 and 200 horsepower.

A hybrid and a fully electric version will join the lineup later in 2018, but the turbo model comes first.

Volvo wants to rethink how we pay for car ownership. —Volvo

6. It has a unique buying option.

The T5 AWD model available at launch will cost $35,200. The less powerful T4 model will start at $33,200 when it goes on sale in summer 2018.

Volvo is attempting to change how people buy and pay for cars. “Care by Volvo” is a flat-fee car payment, insurance payment, and maintenance payment all in one monthly installment. This payment system will be available for the 2019 Volvo XC40.


George Kennedy is a freelance automotive journalist and automotive expert. You can reach him aGeorge.h.kennedy.iii@gmail.com and on Twitter @GKenns101.