Volvo's answer to the BMW 1-series and Audi A3, the Volvo V40, will be launched at Geneva
13 January 2012

Volvo will launch its new Volvo V40 at the Geneva motor show in March. The five-door hatchback will give Volvo a much-needed rival to the BMW 1-series and Audi A3 and is spied here in winter testing for a second time.

The Volvo V40’s launch was confirmed in December by Volvo CEO Stefan Jacoby. The V40 will be based on a development of the front-drive ‘P1’ platform that underpins the C30, S40 and V50 models. The V40 is set to replace both the S40 and V50 in Volvo’s line-up, but the future of the three-door C30 is less clear.

The V40 is tipped to be the first car to get Volvo’s new range of modular four-cylinder VEA (Volvo Environmental Architecture) engines, which will be no greater than 2.0 litres in capacity.

The car was made a priority by Jacoby when he joined the firm from Volkswagen last year. It has been pushed up the product cycle ahead of a replacement for the ageing XC90 full-size SUV.

Volvo insiders have indicated to Autocar in the past that the firm is desperate to compete in one of Europe’s largest market segments and consider making such a car “an open goal”.

Autocar understands the car will be marketed at young, active families and will be a premium product within the Golf class. Such billing will also appeal to the North American market, which Volvo is keen to expand in further.

Volvo will also launch a baby SUV, called XC40 and based on an all-wheel-drive version of the P1 platform. There may be two different versions of the XC34: a standard-wheelbase version for Europe and a stretched model for China and, perhaps, North America. A four-door version of the V40 for China is another possibility, a car which would be a direct replacement for the S40.

See all the latest Volvo reviews, news and video

Join the debate

Comments
15

19 December 2011

The V moniker one stood for Volvo's estate models, now it's being tagged on to a hatchback, of which the current hatch begins with C (C30). As does it's current convertible model (C70). This is one company whose badging policy and marketing hasn't really helped sales.

19 December 2011

[quote Lanehogger]

The V moniker one stood for Volvo's estate models, now it's being tagged on to a hatchback, of which the current hatch begins with C (C30). As does it's current convertible model (C70). This is one company whose badging policy and marketing hasn't really helped sales.

[/quote]

You are slightly wrong, S is for saloon - S40/60/80, C is for coupe - C30,C70, V is for versatile - V50/V60/V70, XC is for cross country - XC60/XC70/XC90.

My understanding is that the forthcoming V40 will be a 5 door hatchback, but marketed as a small estate in the same way the 5 door A3 is, it looks very much like scaled down V60. In my opinion Volvo's badging policy is very easy to understand, it makes more sense than Audi or BMW or Mercedes.

13 January 2012

I still really like the look of the C30 and have been considering a used one as a run-around/commuter. If you were trying to reconcile it with the opposition I suppose you could say that at Volvo it's filling the shoes nowadays occupied at Vauxhall/VW by the GTC/Scirocco, and so it still has a relevance in the marketplace. Would be a shame to see it go, especially since it offers something far more interesting visually than many others are able to offer.

13 January 2012

"but the future of the three-door C30 is less clear." I didn't even realize that ugly thing was still made, I know they dropped the price in 2007 to help shift them but I honestly can't remember the last time I saw one.

Therefore the future is clear, in that it doesn't have one !

 

Hydrogen cars just went POP

13 January 2012

[quote xxxx]"but the future of the three-door C30 is less clear." I didn't even realize that ugly thing was still made, I know they dropped the price in 2007 to help shift them but I honestly can't remember the last time I saw one. [/quote]

Must be a regional thing. There are loads around here- revamp versions mostly.

13 January 2012

With a guy at the helm who used to over see the Golf, I expect good things from this car.

If they are aiming the car at the premium, young active family market, are they also going to be sorting the ride and handling accordingly? The biggest issue with the C30 was the lack lustre dynamics (I think it could have been a lot more successful if it has been given the same suspension settings as it's Focus cousin) and I hope they don't go down the same route with this new car.

 

 

It's all about the twisties........

13 January 2012

[quote TegTypeR](I think it could have been a lot more successful if it has been given the same suspension settings as it's Focus cousin) and I hope they don't go down the same route with this new car.[/quote] Completely agree! It has a brilliant chassis underneath, they need to sort that out.

I think the shape looks promising, and could certainly look better than the 1-series and more interesting than the new A3. I think the new A-Class will be the best looking small premium family car though

15 January 2012

Completely agree with you about it looking better than the 1-series and newly revealed A3. 1 series with its stolen Polo tail lights and tear drop headlights looks conservative compared to the original. The A3 just looks virtually the same from the headlights back. Even though the new A-class which was leaked as a 5 door isn't as exciting as the concept it as you says looks much more appealing. You can see the V40 looks like a scaled down V60 so there's no doubt its going to look better than Audi and BMW's offerings. I hope its a success for Volvo as I've always thought they should have scrapped the S40 and replaced it with a hatchback.

15 January 2012

[quote xxxx]

"but the future of the three-door C30 is less clear." I didn't even realize that ugly thing was still made, I know they dropped the price in 2007 to help shift them but I honestly can't remember the last time I saw one.

Therefore the future is clear, in that it doesn't have one !

[/quote]

I live in Jesmond, Newcastle - its an affluent (and very popular with young professional) inner city suburb and I see a couple everyday - I think it is opening them up to a younger generation - as a soon to be qualified Architect I would consider one - they look great.

The XC60 also seems very popular outside the gates Newcastle Girls and Newcastle Grammar School.

15 January 2012

[quote supermanuel]

[quote xxxx]"but the future of the three-door C30 is less clear." I didn't even realize that ugly thing was still made, I know they dropped the price in 2007 to help shift them but I honestly can't remember the last time I saw one. [/quote]

Must be a regional thing. There are loads around here- revamp versions mostly.

[/quote] I've jut moved from East Kent to West Surrey and have gone from having the ONLY XC60 around to blurring into herds of them. Quite a few new shape C30s too.... So defo a regional demographics thing. I too think Volvo could make a hit with this one. I have been amazed how the drivE range has breathed new life into end of range offerings. If they build on this with new designs they could be on to a winner?

Pages

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Car review
    23 September 2016
    Aston kicks off its ‘second century plan’ with an all-new turbo V12 grand tourer
  • Ford Ka+ 1.2 Ti-VCT 85
    First Drive
    22 September 2016
    A rounded, refined and well-sorted bargain supermini – once you’re used to the confusing role redefinition imposed on the once-cheeky Ka
  •  Maserati Ghibli Diesel
    First Drive
    22 September 2016
    Maserati releases another range of updates for its range best seller, the Ghibli. We've driven the diesel version, but there's little improvement on before
  • Tipo Front
    First Drive
    21 September 2016
    New Fiat Tipo offers impressive space and practicality for a reasonable price. We try the 1.6 diesel on the demanding roads of North Wales
  • Seat Ateca 1.4 TSI 150
    First Drive
    20 September 2016
    The Seat Ateca 1.4 TSI 150 makes perfect sense: it's spacious, tidy to drive for an SUV and cheap to run