If you’re looking purely at the numbers then the diesel versions look to be the most cost-effective to run. Regardless of power output or transmission they all claim to return in excess of 50mpg on the combined cycle, while low CO2 emissions make them a relatively attractive choice as a company car. And yet the emissions aren’t that much lower than the petrols, which even in T5 guise return nearly 40mpg (the manual T3 on the smallest 18-inch alloys promises to crack 45mpg). As a result, there’s not much incentive to go diesel, unless of course you crack the 20-odd thousand mile annual threshold where the extra cost of buying a diesel and its pricier fuel are offset by its greater efficiency. You certainly won’t make any savings on road fund licence, with all cars costing the same to tax regardless of engine.
On the plus side, the XC40’s early popularity with buyers mean’ that residuals are strong and should remain so for the next few years. Servicing costs are also reasonable, with Volvo offering various pre-paid options and long-life intervals.