In-depth reviews

Volvo XC40 SUV - MPG, running costs & CO2

Alternative fuel versions are now in the range, but the petrol engines are thirsty

Carbuyer Rating

4.0 out of 5

MPG, running costs & CO2 Rating

4.0 out of 5

Plug-in hybrid versions of the XC40 will satisfy those looking for radically reduced running costs, although they're more expensive to buy in the first place. A pure-electric Recharge model is also offered, which we've reviewed separately, with zero exhaust emissions and a range of over 250 miles. In the meantime, there’s a range of conventional petrol engines that provide reasonable economy on a par with most rivals, while diesels have now been discontinued.

Volvo XC40 MPG & CO2

Where the petrol engines are concerned, the now-withdrawn front-wheel-drive T2 and T3 manual options return 37.2-40.4mpg and emit 158-179g/km for a high BiK band that won't necessarily suit company-car drivers. This is on a par with the 40.9mpg and 157g/km of the Audi Q3 with a 1.5-litre petrol turbo.

What’s surprising is that there are no economy drawbacks by choosing the B3 or B4 engines, even though they have more power, the option of four-wheel drive (B4 versions) and an automatic gearbox. Emissions are slightly higher on the four-wheel-drive version, though, placing it in the highest BiK banding, which means it’s even less likely to appeal to business drivers. The now-discontinued B5 petrol engine returned up to 36mpg, which was better than the Jaguar E-Pace P250 and its figures of 29.4mpg and 185g/km of CO2.

The T4 and T5 Recharge plug-in hybrids officially return between 117.7-134.5mpg, although you’ll struggle to achieve anywhere near this figure unless you regularly charge the 10.7kWh battery pack and make mostly short journeys around town, where the electric motor can take care of most driving.

Recharge at home regularly and, depending on your driving habits, the plug-in hybrid could cost you almost nothing in fuel. It manages up to 28 miles of electric range and recharges in about three hours from a home charger using the optional 3.5kW Type 2 charging cable, which costs £50. Importantly, its CO2 emissions are 47-55g/km, making it an attractive option for company-car drivers and granting the car access to low emissions zones for free. Remember that the 28-mile estimate is just that, and you may see fewer miles on a charge depending on your driving habits.

The Volvo XC40 Recharge EV comes with a much bigger battery (either 69kWh for the standard version or 78kWh for the Recharge Twin) and achieves between 259 and 274 miles depending on the version. We’d stick with the single-motor front-wheel-drive car, because the twin-motor versions with all-wheel drive are expensive (although their huge power output might be tempting). All versions qualify for free road tax and minimal Benefit-in-Kind tax for company-car drivers.

There’s also the sleeker Volvo C40, which only comes with electric power. It’s a bit more expensive but its more streamlined shape helps to slightly increase range.

Volvo discontinued diesel engines in late 2020 but previously the most economical engine and gearbox combination was the D3 manual, which could return around 50mpg while emitting 143g/km of CO2. The more powerful D4 came with four-wheel drive and an automatic as standard and was barely less economical than the similarly equipped D3 – as long as you don’t choose the biggest alloy wheels.

Insurance groups

The T3 petrol sits in group 22, while the powerful T5 is two to three groups higher. Volvo offers an 'all-in-one' subscription package called Care By Volvo. This rolls a lease payment on the car, plus the cost of maintenance and insurance cover for three drivers, into a single monthly payment.

Warranty

Volvo provides a fairly typical three-year/60,000-mile warranty that can be extended if you’re prepared to pay extra. While it matches the Volkswagen Tiguan, it looks a bit stingy next to manufacturers offering longer cover periods for free.

Servicing

It’s possible to spread the cost of servicing by signing up to monthly payments instead of being hit in the pocket at the garage. The aforementioned Care By Volvo package rolls the cost of servicing, insurance and leasing your XC40 into a single monthly payment, although service plans are available separately if you’re not buying or leasing your car through Care by Volvo.

Next Steps

Which Is Best?

Cheapest

  • Name
    1.5 T2 Momentum Core 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £24,500

Most Economical

  • Name
    1.5 T4 RC PHEV Inscription Expression 5dr Auto
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £36,545

Fastest

  • Name
    2.0 B5P Inscription Pro 5dr AWD Auto
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £39,675

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