2022 Volvo XC40 Recharge review: A great SUV made even better

    A blocked-off grille, lack of exhaust ideas and a pair new wheel designs are the one issues that visually differentiate the Recharge from a daily XC40. That’s high-quality by me; the XC40 is by far the perfect trying crossover in its class, particularly within the Recharge-exclusive Sage Green. The solely no-cost coloration choice is black, with metallic paints like my automotive’s Thunder Grey costing $695. Under the hood is a frunk that has a plastic cowl, but it surely’s fairly tiny and might actually solely match a small backpack or the automotive’s charging cables.The Recharge has the identical all-black inside because the common XC40’s R-Design trim, save for the shortage of a begin button — simply get within the automotive with the important thing on you and it routinely activates, then put the gear selector in drive and also you’re off. The upholstery is a pleasant mixture of actual nappa leather-based and suede with white stitching and piping, and Volvo’s seats proceed to be a number of the finest within the enterprise. I want the Recharge at the least acquired distinctive trim items or a special obtainable coloration scheme, just like the cool backlit trim and leather-free upholstery of the C40 Recharge. And sadly, Volvo removed the 2021 mannequin’s obtainable Lava Orange carpets.While the XC40 Recharge is acquainted to take a look at and sit in, the driving expertise is far improved over the gas-powered fashions. It makes use of the identical pair of electrical motors because the Polestar 2, which pump out a complete of 402 horsepower and 486 pound-feet of torque, barely lower than the Polestar. Volvo quotes a 0-to-60-mph time of 4.7 seconds, practically 1.5 seconds faster than the 252-hp XC40 T5 AWD. Acceleration comes with no drama, simply addictive instantaneous torque and many grip. The common XC40’s turbocharged four-cylinder powertrains might be tough, loud and jerky, however the Recharge has none of these downsides — it is quiet, easy and composed, each round city and on the freeway.Making the expertise even higher is the Recharge’s one-pedal drive mode, achieved by glorious regenerative braking. This might be turned off fully, however I do not know why you’ll; as soon as you employ one-pedal driving it is arduous to return. The Recharge’s trip might be agency with the obtainable 20-inch wheels, although it is by no means too stiff or uncomfortable. Thanks to the position of the battery pack, the Recharge has a decrease middle of gravity than the common XC40, and it corners with loads much less physique roll. The steering is fast and direct, and a toggle change within the touchscreen makes it heavier. It’s no efficiency automotive, however the XC40 Recharge is sort of enjoyable on a twisty street.
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    Volvo’s new Android Automotive infotainment system is the long run. James Chrosniak/RoadshowWhere the XC40 Recharge falls brief is its driving vary. With its 78-kilowatt-hour battery pack, the EPA charges the Recharge at 223 miles, which is sort of a bit lower than different electrical crossovers just like the Ford Mustang Mach-E and Tesla Model Y. But that is a lift over the 2021 mannequin’s 208-mile ranking, although a brand new over-the-air software program replace applies the improved vary to final 12 months’s Recharge, too. The XC40’s vary is well achievable — and even beatable — with out altering my driving model. On a 150-kW DC quick charger, a 0-to-80% cost is feasible in 33 minutes, and Volvo partnered with ChargePoint to provide homeowners simpler entry to over 100,000 chargers within the US.Assuaging vary anxiousness is the Recharge’s glorious infotainment system. Its Android Automotive working system is tremendous just like the one within the Polestar, and it is also now present in different Volvos just like the 2022 XC60 and V90 Cross Country. The native navigation system is Google Maps, which is my most well-liked strategy to get round anyway, and it appears to be like tremendous slick on the XC40’s 9-inch touchscreen. I want a satellite tv for pc view was obtainable, although Volvo says that might come by way of a future replace. Inputting a vacation spot provides you an estimated cost for the top of the journey, and if a cost is required on the best way it’s going to reroute you to obtainable charging stations. This removes a lot of the stress of planning EV journeys, particularly in the event you’re the kind of individual that makes use of navigation on a regular basis. The customary 12-inch digital gauge cluster can present a full view of Google Maps, and the remainder of the show is sweet and minimal.
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    There’s room within the frunk for the Volvo’s charging cables and never way more. James Chrosniak/RoadshowFor 2022 the XC40 will get a brand new Range Assistant app (additionally obtainable for 2021 fashions as an over-the-air replace) that provides an precise estimated vary readout, which is a superb addition because the Recharge would not truly present the vary within the gauge cluster, at the least not till you get all the way down to round 25% battery life, and even then it solely modifications in 5-mile increments. Instead, the gauge cluster simply reveals the present battery proportion. The Range app additionally reveals complete consumption and gauges for what precisely is utilizing up essentially the most vitality between velocity, driving model and local weather controls. A spread optimizer perform adjusts some local weather settings for higher effectivity as nicely.The remainder of the Android system is nice, too. It’s loads less complicated, extra responsive and fewer glitchy than the common XC40’s older Sensus setup. I’m a staunch iPhone person, and whereas the Recharge lacks Apple AutomotivePlay I do not discover myself lacking it. Logging into my Google account by way of a QR code system is tremendous simple, and I’m in a position to obtain media apps like Spotify by the Google Play retailer. With a Bluetooth connection the Recharge can learn out and ship textual content messages, and the Siri-like Google Assistant works nice.As it is primarily based on a extra uplevel trim of the XC40 to begin, the Recharge comes with a bunch of goodies. Standard options embody 19-inch wheels, a panoramic sunroof, dual-zone computerized local weather management, energetic cornering LED headlights, heated entrance seats, that 12-inch digital gauge cluster, auto-dimming mirrors and rain-sensing wipers. Also customary is a 360-degree digital camera, blind-spot monitoring, entrance and rear parking sensors, lane-keeping help, street signal recognition, automated emergency braking and rear cross-traffic alert.
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    The Recharge appears to be like simply pretty much as good as the traditional XC40. James Chrosniak/RoadshowMy take a look at automotive has the $2,850 Ultimate package deal, and it is a must-have. This will get you headlight washers, a wi-fi smartphone charger, heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, heated wiper blades, 20-inch wheels, a warmth pump that helps preserve vitality and vary, a bangin’ 13-speaker Harman Kardon sound system and Volvo’s pretty Pilot Assist driver-assist system that mixes adaptive cruise management with steering help. The 20-inch wheels can be found for $800 in the event you do not go for the Ultimate pack, as is the $1,100 Climate package deal that provides heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, warmth pump and headlight washers.The XC40 Recharge begins at $56,395, together with a $1,095 vacation spot cost and earlier than any potential incentives or tax credit. That’s about $14,000 greater than the entry value for an XC40 T5 AWD R-Design, and I believe the Recharge is totally well worth the upcharge. My totally loaded Recharge comes out to $59,940. While it’d seem to be numerous scratch for a compact crossover, it isn’t a lot pricier than a base Tesla Model Y, and the Volvo seems like extra of an entire automotive regardless of its vary and efficiency deficit.As a lot as I just like the XC40, although, I’d moderately go for the brand new C40 Recharge, which prices about the identical however has even cooler styling. And I do not assume I’d have both one over the dual-motor Polestar 2, which is now a pair thousand {dollars} cheaper to begin due to reshuffled choice packages. The Polestar is slightly higher to drive and has a extra distinctive design, and I believe it is simply extra attention-grabbing general. But the XC40 Recharge nonetheless has a ton of enchantment, and you’ll’t go mistaken with both. Stylish, nice to drive and simply quirky sufficient, the XC40 Recharge is all the pieces I like a couple of Volvo with a improbable EV powertrain.

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