Barn­storm­ing Volvo V40


MOST of the Volvo V40s sold in this coun­try up to now have prob­a­bly been diesels, be­cause there is such a wide va­ri­ety of them to choose from.

But at the top of the petrol range is the barn­storm­ing T5, which is quicker to 60 mph than the Ford Fo­cus ST and quite a few other cars that are reck­oned to be good per­form­ers.

The Cross Coun­try ver­sion has raised sus­pen­sion and is the only car in the whole V40 range with four-wheel drive.

That seems a bit strange re­ally, be­cause peo­ple who live in the coun­try would buy the diesel ver­sion fit­ted with it. Mind you, many farm­ers take their two-wheel drive cars across the fields when they want to and don’t even think about it!

The T5 has a 2.0-litre turbo pow­er­plant pro­duc­ing an ex­cel­lent 245bhp but is only avail­able in Pro spec at the top of the range and with a stan­dard eight-speed au­to­matic gear­box

This is not a car that you buy for econ­omy but for per­for­mance. It is hugely quick from any speed, with mas­sive re­serves of power un­der the right foot.

The en­gine is quiet and re­fined through­out most of its rev range and will also pull from low revs when the gear­box al­lows. This has Drive, Sport and Man­ual set­tings and most own­ers – as ever – will rarely bother do­ing the changes them­selves be­cause the au­to­matic does it so well.

It’s very good in nor­mal Drive, but click it into Sport and ev­ery­thing be­comes that much more im­me­di­ate and re­spon­sive, with a quicker kick­down and higher speeds in ev­ery gear.

Be­cause of this per­for­mance and its ex­cel­lent and very safe cor­ner­ing, it is very en­joy­able for an en­thu­si­ast.

The sat nav is not touch­screen con­trolled and is op­er­ated by small but­tons in the cen­tre con­sole. Other equip­ment in­cludes au­to­matic lights and wipers, multi-func­tion steer­ing wheel, voice ac­ti­va­tion, radar con­trolled cruise, key­less en­try and start­ing, park­ing sen­sors with a cam­era, elec­tric heated leather seats, al­loys and alarm. It also has start/stop, but this only works if you keep your foot on the brake.

Safety is sec­ond to none of course, with loads of airbags, lane de­par­ture warn­ing, col­li­sion warn­ing, prox­im­ity warn­ing and au­to­matic brak­ing if the car senses dan­ger ahead.

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