Volvo V40 review - can the alternative premium hatch beat the best? - Performance and 0-60 time

Smaller and less engaging than a Volkswagen Golf, the Volvo V40 has style and safety as its key strengths

Evo rating
Price
from £20,255
  • Distinctive design inside and out, wide range of engines
  • Quite cramped inside, doesn't engage like its spec suggests it might

Performance and 0-60mph time

The most powerful Volvo V40 is the T5 engined version. Boasting a 2.0-litre petrol unit that produces 242bhp, it manages 0-62mph in 6.3 seconds, although in reality the car is irritatingly limited by traction issues, making its in-gear acceleration much more impressive. The car will manage a top speed of 149mph all out. 

The D4 diesel models aren't all that far behind, managing the benchmark 0-62mph sprint in 7.4 seconds and topping out at 143mph. Next up is the V40 T4, which can hit 62mph from rest in 7.7 seconds.

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Despite the less impressive performance stats for T2 and T3 petrol engines (0-62mph times of 9.9- and 8.8 seconds respectively and top speeds of 121- and 130mph) they suit the V40 well and don't tax the chassis as much. They're ideal for drivers that spend most of their time in the city or at urban speeds. Those that drive on the motorway a lot will be more interested in the D2 and D3 diesels. The former is clearly focused on economy more than performance, as evidenced by its languorous 0-62mph time of 11.9 seconds. Ironically, specify that car in the sporty looking R-Design trim and it becomes slower again. The V40 D3 is more satisfying to drive and posts a respectable 0-62mph time of 9.6 seconds and a top speed of 130mph.

When powered by the D2 or D3 diesel engines, or by the T4 petrol unit, the V40 Cross Country accelerates just as quickly as the regular hatchback, though it's a little slower in D4 specification. Conversely, thanks to all-wheel drive as standard, the range-topping T5 Cross Country is quicker than the hatch to 62mph (taking 6.1 seconds). That's despite a 200kg weight penalty, underlining how traction limited the standard car is. 

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