Buyer's Guide

2021 Volvo Xc40
Select a Different Model (6 Available): T4 Inscription FWD
Fuel Economy $ 23 / 33 mpg
Cargo (Std/Max) 47 cu.ft.
Seating (Std/Max) 5/5
Horsepower 187@4,700
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  • Good handling
  • Distinctive looks inside and out
  • Plenty of standard driver assistance tech


  • Lots of hard interior plastics
  • Noisy cabin
  • Choppy ride with large alloy wheels and R-Design suspension

Aimed at younger consumers, the Volvo XC40 sports an extroverted appearance and is available in cool two-tone exterior colors. To maximize practicality, the XC40 incorporates clever design cues like speakers mounted on the side of the footwell, an integrated garbage bin on the center console, and a storage compartment under the front passenger's seat. There's even an orange interior carpet option for the XC40 R-Design.

What's New

  • All XC40 models now get LED front fog lights, adaptive LED headlights, an auto-dimming side mirrors, two USB-C ports in the rear passenger area, leather upholstery, rear parking sensors, blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert as standard
  • T5 AWD models get heated front seats as standard
  • Wireless charging and the 12-volt outlet in the cargo area now part of the Advanced package
  • Heated windshield wipers are now part of the Climate package
  • An all-electric XC40 Recharge model joins the lineup featuring 402 hp and 486 lb-ft of torque from two electric motors and about 208 miles of estimated range

What We Think

In the subcompact luxury SUV segment, the Volvo XC40 offers the most well-rounded experience. The turbocharged T5 engine provides good acceleration even in the less powerful T4 variant, and the chassis offers nice handling, especially in R-Design trim. The interior is a modern yet minimalistic and has been packaged with thoughtful storage solutions like front door pockets that can accommodate laptops and tablets. On certain trims, cool design cues like two-tone leather upholstery and white driftwood trim spice up the cabin with pops of color.

Once you have a look around the cabin, take a minute to learn Volvo's multimedia system. Despite the iPad-like menu layout, the touchscreen can be slow to react to your inputs. Other XC40 issues include the lack of sound deadening, with excessive amounts of noise entering the cabin. R-Design models feature a sport-tuned suspension that delivers a busier ride in exchange for better body control.

Even so, there's a reason we rank the XC40 so highly in our rankings. As a first introduction to the luxury brand, the relatively affordable XC40 is smart and stylish.

Performance and Fuel Economy

The 2021 Volvo XC40 is powered by a 2.0-liter turbo-four paired to an eight-speed automatic transmission. Output is 187 hp and 221 lb-ft on the FWD T4 or 248 hp and 258 lb-ft in the T5 model, which has AWD as standard. EPA fuel economy ratings are 23/32 mpg city/highway for the T4 and 22/30 mpg for the T5 model.

Does Volvo Have an Electric XC40?

The new all-electric XC40 P8 Recharge is the most powerful model at 402 hp and 486 lb-ft combined from its two electric motors. Range is expected to be 208 miles on a single charge. With all that torque delivered immediately, the XC40 T8 is impressively quick, too—0-60 mph acceleration takes just 4.2 seconds. That makes it the quickest Volvo we've ever tested.


Like all Volvos, safety is a high priority in the XC40. That shows with its strong crash test results. From the NHTSA, the XC40 receives a five-star overall safety rating, the highest possible score. Likewise it earns top honors from the IIHS, scoring Top Safety Pick+ designation for 2021.

All XC40s get forward collision warning, front and rear automatic emergency braking, pedestrian detection, lane keeping assist, blind-spot monitoring, automatic high beams, and rear cross-traffic alert as standard. The Advanced package adds Volvo's Pilot Assist system, which bundles adaptive cruise control, enhanced steering assist, and traffic jam assist.


The XC40's infotainment system is the same as in more expensive Volvo models, featuring a 9.0-inch portrait-style touchscreen, a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. Built-in navigation is available via the Premium package on the base Momentum grade or as standard on the R-Design and Inscription trims. You can also upgrade the standard audio system into a 14-speaker Harman Kardon surround sound unit, which is a standalone option.

Recommended Trim

Try an XC40 Momentum with the T5 AWD powertrain. The Momentum trim allows you to select nearly every feature on the other trims as well as two-tone exterior colors to make the little Volvo even bolder. We suggest ponying up the extra money for the T5 AWD model because the extra power doesn't sacrifice much in terms of fuel economy.

Key Competitors:

Engine Name
Engine: 4-Cyl Turbo 2.0 Liter
Transmission Name
Transmission, Geartronic 8 Speed Automatic Mode Select with Manual Mode (AW TG-81SC)
T4 Inscription FWD
Premium Subcompact Utility
Standard MPG
Body Style
Fuel Type
Unleaded Premium
Seating Capacity
Package Invoice Retail
Show Full Specs
Corrosion Warranty Miles
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Corrosion Warranty Months
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Full Warranty Miles
Powertrain Warranty Months
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Maintenance Warranty Miles
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IIHS Best Pick
NHTSA Rating Front Driver
Not Rated
IIHS Front Moderate Overlap
NHTSA Rating Front Passenger
Not Rated
IIHS Front Small Overlap
NHTSA Rating Front Side
Not Rated
IIHS Overall Side Crash
NHTSA Rating Overall
Not Rated
IIHS Rear Crash
NHTSA Rating Rear Side
Not Rated
IIHS Roof Strength
NHTSA Rating Rollover
Not Rated
Amount Description Expiry Date
$500 Volvo announces a Loyalty Bonus Cash offer on select models for current Volvo or Saab owners or lessees when leasing a new eligible model. [Regional Incentive. See dealer for availability.] 06-30-2021
$1000 Volvo announces a Retail Loyalty Bonus Cash offer on select models for current Volvo or Saab owners or lessees. [Regional Incentive. See dealer for availability.] 06-30-2021
$500 Volvo has announced a Purchase Bonus for select models. [Regional Incentive. See dealer for availability.] 06-30-2021
$250 Volvo has announced a VCFS Lease Bonus for select models. [Regional Incentive. See dealer for availability.] 06-30-2021