We had the chance to drive the 2021 Volvo XC40 Recharge round northern New Jersey for a few hours to report our impressions of Volvo’s first all-electric automobile. 

The Volvo XC40 Recharge (or, if you would like its full title it is Volvo XC40 Recharge Pure Electrical P8) is the electrical model of Volvo’s highly regarded subcompact SUV. 

The XC40 Recharge is all-wheel drive and powered by two 201 horsepower electrical motors giving a complete system output of 402 horsepower and 486 lb-ft of torque. As with most all-wheel-drive electrical autos, these that do not have in-wheel motors anyway, one motor powers the entrance wheels, and the opposite drives the rear.

The XC40 Recharge is powered by a 78 kWh battery pack, of which 75 kWh is usable. Its EPA-rated vary is 208 miles, however that is when charged to 100%, which Volvo recommends towards doing. As a result of the automobile makes use of a lot of its whole capability (96%), like Tesla, Volvo recommends every day charging to 90%. If that steering is adopted, the usable rated vary is 187 miles, however as we all know with electrical autos, relying in your driving, your mileage will range. 

2021 Volvo XC40 Recharge

The XC40 Recharge is able to recharging at a peak charge of 150 kW whereas charging on a high-powered DC quick charger and Volvo claims a 0% to 80% recharge time of 40 minutes. We tried to check out the charging at an Electrify America charging station however had been unsuccessful, because the charger and the automobile had a communication subject. So we reached out to Electrify America and Volvo for remark and acquired the next:

Russell Datz Volvo’s Nationwide Media Relations Supervisor: “I spoke to a couple individuals and may affirm there’s a acknowledged software program compatibility subject with a small variety of chargers on the EA community. We’re scheduled to have a repair early within the 12 months, forward of any important buyer deliveries.” 


Mike Moran, Communications Supervisor for Electrify America: “Electrify America has not had entry to the Volvo XC40 Recharge for testing in our Heart of Expertise Lab. We’re at present partaking with Volvo to conduct a take a look at of the automobile and can remark after the testing and analysis are full.”

As soon as the problems have been resolved, we’ll ask Volvo for a automobile mortgage so we are able to conduct correct DC Quick-charge testing. 

The spec sheet for the XC40 Recharge states that it may possibly cost at as much as 11 kW from a stage 2 supply. Nevertheless, whereas navigating by way of the cost settings, the utmost cost charge may very well be set to was 32-amps, which might point out a 7.7 kW most cost charge. We’ll get clarification from Volvo on this and replace the submit when we’ve got further info.

On the street, the Volvo XC40 recharge was a pleasure to drive. The 402-hp powertrain launches the automobile sooner than you’d anticipate – it is borderline too quick and may rocket from a standstill to 60 mph in about 4 and a half seconds. The facility supply is instantaneous and surprisingly, it really felt rather a lot like my Tesla Model 3.

The XC40 Recharge gives true one-pedal driving (they usually name it “One Pedal Mode”) with aggressive lift-off brake regeneration. There’s a “Regular” driving mode for those who do not respect the aggressive lift-off regen. The driving force does have the choice of turning off One Pedal Drive within the settings by deciding on “Driving”, then “activate” or “deactivate” One Pedal Drive. The automobile additionally has blended brakes so in both mode you add extra vitality recuperation when miserable the friction brake pedal.

The XC40 Recharge makes use of Volvo’s Compact Modular Architecture or CMA, which the Polestar 2 and quite a few different autos from Lynk & Co in addition to Geely use. It was engineered to accommodate each kind of powertrain, from pure ICE, to PHEV, to full electrical. As such, there was no intrusion from the batteries into the passenger or cargo space.

Nevertheless utilizing a non-dedicated structure has its disadvantages, and the XC40 Recharge weighs 4,823 kilos; 456 kilos heavier than a Tesla Mannequin Y, which is a bigger automobile with roughly the identical measurement battery pack and 50% extra driving vary.  

The XC40 Recharge has a beginning worth of $54,985, which nets out at $47,485 as soon as the federal tax credit score is utilized, so long as the proprietor qualifies for the credit score. Even with the tax credit score factored within the XC 40 recharge remains to be prices greater than $5,000 greater than the most costly trim of the ICE XC40, the T5 Inscription.

An argument may very well be made that the added efficiency of the XC40 Recharge alone is price the additional cash, however we imagine the big pricing hole between the ICE XC40 fashions and the Recharge goes to be an issue for Volvo until they actually incentivize the lease offers. 

DOE efficiency ratings 2021 SUVs

In comparison with some related BEV opponents, the XC40 Recharge reveals its lack of effectivity. The a lot bigger and heavier Audi e-tron wants the identical quantity of vitality to drive 100 miles.

One other downside we foresee is the vary. Throughout our 39-mile jaunt, we noticed an effectivity of about 2 miles per kWh. Startled by the dearth of effectivity, we seemed up the XC40 Recharge’s official effectivity numbers and located we weren’t too far off of the Division of Vitality’s figures. The Recharge is rated to wish 43 kWh to drive 100 miles, which interprets to 2.32 mi/kWh. (26.72 kWh/100 km)

On the finish of our drive, the XC40 Recharge’s show confirmed we averaged a consumption of fifty.7 kWh per 100 miles. That is worse than the official ranking, however we had been driving in chilly climate, and street testing a automobile is not probably the most environment friendly type of driving. Nonetheless, that is the lowest effectivity quantity I’ve ever recorded on a media drive. Properly, excluding the time I drove 167 mph in a Porsche Taycan Turbo S on the Autobahn in Germany.

XC40 Recharge Efficiency

Contemplating we had been driving in 23° F (-5 C) temperature with the heater on, and ran a few full-throttle acceleration runs, that appears about proper. Because the XC40 Recharge does make use of a warmth pump system, we had hoped the usage of the cabin heater would not have had such an impact on the effectivity, and thus the driving vary.

With that type of (in)effectivity, XC40 Recharge house owners could solely see about 150 miles of driving vary within the winter – and that is in the event that they ignore Volvo’s advice and cost the automobile to 100%. Contemplating most people aren’t too snug driving an EV when the state of cost drops beneath 10%, the sensible vary could also be even much less. We predict that is an issue for Volvo. 

Personally, I like how the XC40 Recharges seems and drives, however the excessive worth and low vary goes to severely restrict gross sales, for my part. I got here to this media drive so wanting to like this electrical automobile however left questioning if the gasoline model is a greater choice – and that is an opinion I nearly by no means have. 

Try the video and tell us your ideas on the XC40 Recharge within the remark part beneath.