Volvo’s electric vehicle subsidiary Recharge recently launched the electric version of the XC40. Obviously, the Recharge XC40 is based on the award-winning XC40 crossover. This means it has all the right ingredients in spearheading Volvo’s strategy of introducing a new electric model every five years.
“We have said this several times before: for Volvo Cars, the future is electric,” said Håkan Samuelsson, chief executive of Volvo. “Today we take a major new step in that direction with the launch of our fully electric XC40 and the Recharge car line.”
Recharge XC40 looks pretty similar to the gasoline-powered version
In all fairness to Volvo, the company did a spectacular job in differentiating the compact XC40 crossover from the rest. Some people call it chunky, but we like to call it a funky makeover devoid of those generic curves and shapes found on most crossovers.
Simply put, the XC40 looks different, and it’s a great platform towards electrification.
However, the Recharge XC40 is blessed with unique styling bits. The roof is blacked out to give it a floating effect while the grille is now closed-out to reduce drag. Also, the mirror caps and lower fascia are also blacked-out to complete the look.
And since the Recharge XC40 is still very much a Volvo, you still get those magnificent Thor’s hammer headlights with distinctive daytime running lamps.
It packs quite a punch
The conventional XC40 is powered by a pair of turbocharged four-cylinder gasoline engines with 187-horsepower and 248-horsepower. But in the Recharge XC40, all the oily bits are replaced with twin electric motors and a 78 kWh battery pack, the latter of which is mounted in the floor to provide a lower center of gravity.
And according to Volvo, the all-electric XC40 produces 408-horsepower and 487 pound-feet of torque, which is almost double the output of the gasoline version. With this much power and torque, it accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in 4.9-seconds and is much faster than its gasoline counterpart.
And it’s good for 249 miles of range
The Recharge XC40 is a long-range electric car with DC fast-charging capabilities. Volvo said their newest creation achieves 249 miles (400 km) of range in the WLTP test cycle. If you run out of juice, the built-in fast charger can replenish the 78 kWh battery pack from zero to 80-percent in only 40 minutes.
What this basically means is the new Recharge XC40 is more powerful, just as fast, and has a longer range than Jaguar’s I-Pace – despite the Jag having a larger 90-kWh battery pack.
It also has the latest version of Android Automotive OS
If we have the power to change one thing about the gasoline XC40, it has to be the fiddly touchscreen interface with a steep learning curve. But now, you can say hello to the latest version of Android Auto in the Recharge XC40.
This isn’t the first time we encountered Android OS in a Volvo. Interestingly, it’s the same found in Volvo’s high-performance Polestar 2 EV. Thankfully, it got carried over to the electric XC40. This means you get Google Maps, Google Assistant, and have access to the Google Play Store. The system also boasts over-the-air software updates for added features.
Recharge XC40 is all-electric, which means it has a frunk
And by ‘frunk’ we mean a trunk under the hood. Volvo has yet to divulge the exact specs, but there’s enough room in the frunk for a medium-sized overnight bag. If you need to carry more stuff, you still get enough cargo room in the back for larger items.
Volvo is aiming to become a climate-neutral company by 2040 and releasing the Recharge XC40 is a start. First deliveries are expected to begin later in 2020 with prices starting at around $48,000 after federal incentives.