Volvo has taken the veil off the all-new XC40 crossover concept at Sweden. A production version based on this concept will be unveiled next year. The production XC40 SUV will be the first model to use Volvo’s new CMA (Compact Modular Architecture) platform. This concept gives us a thinly disguised look at the XC40’s styling. The carmaker also unveiled another concept called 40.2 which previews the next-gen V40 hatchback. The CMA platform that will underpin these two concepts will be shared with other models manufactured by parent company Geely.
The Volvo 40.1 features a hybrid powertrain with a three-cylinder petrol turbo engine working with an electric motor. It reveals that, despite carrying the same engine branding as the XC90 T8 – the XC40 will be front-wheel drive. The concept’s powertrain is described as T5 Twin Engine and uses a 1.5-litre three-cylinder petrol engine, closely related to the existing 2.0-litre four, and drives the front wheels in conjunction with an electric motor and through a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox.
The petrol engine produces 182.5hp and the electric motor adds 75hp, with power coming from a compact 9.7kWh battery pack mounted at the centre of the car. That’s a total combined output of 250bhp for the petrol-electric powertrain and we’re told that it will have 48km of pure electric range. The gearbox is particularly clever, with the electric motor acting on one of the dual-clutch shafts (the one that handles second, fourth, sixth and reverse). This gives it the potential to add boost through one of the shafts while the internal combustion engine drives the other.
Styling carries through much of the form language of Volvo’s larger products, with front-end design similar to the XC90 and an angular athleticism to the 40.1’s side-on profile. The CMA platform will allow for both front and all-wheel-drive variants, which means it will allow Geely to use cheaper components while still allowing Volvo to make versions that will be able to compete in the premium segment. Volvo could even offer a version with an electrically powered rear axle, similar to that of the Volvo XC90 T8 Twin Engine, although that would come later.
The production version of the XC40 is likely to rival the likes of the Mercedes GLA, Audi Q3 and BMW X1.