XC40 PHEV seems to be the pick of the range even though it’s expensive, heavy and front-wheel drive only.
The plug-in hybrid version of the Volvo XC40, called the T5 Recharge (formerly known as the Twin Engine) in Europe, is a great buy for those who want a quick yet relaxed and comfortable crossover that comes with a plug. According to this review by Carwow, it’s got a lot going for it and for the right buyer it might be the pick of the range.
Matt Watson begins his video review by testing out the T5 PHEV’s performance against the normal non-plug-in XC40 T5. The latter has a 2-liter four-cylinder turbo engine and all-wheel drive, while the Recharge model as a 1.5-liter three-cylinder turbo and electric boost, but is only front-wheel drive.
But what’s surprising is that even though on paper it’s nearly a second slower to sprint to 100 km/h (62 mph), in the real world it looks like it’s actually faster. The T5 with all-wheel drive does sprint off the line faster, but the Recharge catches up and in the in-gear acceleration test, it leaves it for dead.
And as is the case with all PHEVs, if you keep its battery charged and drive it as it is intended to be driven, you will get excellent economy out of it. Forget to charge it and drive it like any other car and its efficiency is comparable to that of the normal T5 - it’s therefore a vehicle for those who have access to charging, because otherwise the non-plug-in variant makes more sense; if you do have easy access to chargers, then maybe the fully-electric XC40 might work for you too.
Reviewers from other outlets have also tested the XC40 T5 Recharge in the UK and they too have mostly good things to say about it; check out their videos posted below.