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Top of the hatch backs: The Volvo V40 is ideal for young executives

By Graeme Lund - Dec 14, 2016
Top of the hatch backs: The Volvo V40 is ideal for young executives

Volvo’s five-door V40 is designed to take on the premium family hatchback giants and does so admirably. This sophisticated-feeling hatch is good looking and has great standard equipment. The range of engines and classy interior also make it attractive.

This is Volvo’s first five-door hatch. On looks alone, it’s highly competitive. The 2017 Geartronic Inscription model that I drove had a beautifully finished two tone, beige and black interior and sporty mags.

Driving out of the dealership on Cape Road into the busy traffic, I noticed that the V40 has tidy handling and a little later, after negotiating speed bumps and potholes, it offers an absorbent ride quality too. The front-wheel drive offers plenty of grip.

Under the bonnet, the fizzy 1.5l Drive–E turbo petrol engine was fun. This exceptional engine is smooth, eager and hot-hatch fast (the 0-100 dash takes 8.3 seconds and has a top speed of 210km/h) yet somehow blends it with high economy and low CO2.

Volvo has blended its usual warm and welcoming design with fine space, good layout and great quality. The seats are exquisitely comfortable and there are neat design touches such as a frameless rear-view mirror, keyless drive, LED illumination with the iconic Thor’s Hammer design seen on Volvo’s new 90 series cars, also with vertical glossy black bars as a front grill giving the V40 an even wider look in the front and they highlight the family bonds with its bigger siblings.

All V40s get a digital radio, CD player, Bluetooth hands-free connection and audio streaming, plus a USB input that will allow full control of Android and Apple phones through the standard 5.0in colour display. The system is controlled via a combination of small shortcut buttons and a rotary dial on the steering wheel.  There are also electric driver an passenger seat adjusters.

There’s plenty of room up front for even tall drivers to get comfortable. Storage space is good. There’s a shallow cubby hidden behind the upright fascia of the dashboard, and it’s rubberised so is ideal for storing parking change. You can also slide your phone in there if you haven’t got it plugged into the USB input, which is hidden away in the centre console cubby that also doubles as an armrest.  The cabby hole is air-conditioned and works as a cooler box.

I thoroughly enjoyed driving the Volvo V40. This is a great car and ideal for young professionals looking for a classy vehicle but not wanting to overspend on their budget. Priced from R337 700, the V40 it is good value for money.

To book a test drive, call Volvo on 041 365 0035 or visit their show room at 355 Cape Road, Newton Park, Port Elizabeth.

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