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Volvo V40

V40

Volvo logo1 Feb 2013

By TIM NICHOLSON

PITCHED as the world’s most technologically advanced hatchback, the V40 achieved a record Euro NCAP safety rating and set new standards with innovations like the world’s first pedestrian-protecting airbag.

A customisable digital instrument display and the latest version of Volvo’s City Safety autonomous braking (improved to work at up to 50km/h) were standard equipment across the range, which comprised three trim levels, two diesel engines and two petrols.

However only buyers who ticked the $5000 Driver Support option box – exclusive to high-spec Luxury and R-Design variants – could truly claim to be driving the most advanced hatch.

The pack added adaptive cruise control, pedestrian detection, autonomous emergency braking, self parking, road sign recognition, lane-keeping assistance, automatic high beam, and advanced blind spot monitoring.

All V40s came with an eight speaker audio system with five-inch colour display, USB input with iPod compatibility, Bluetooth audio streaming, climate control, cruise control, rear parking sensors and electric driver’s seat adjustment with memory.

Further highlights included a multi-function steering wheel, automatic wipers and headlights, a self-dimming interior mirror, a chilled glovebox, LED daytime running lights, interior ambient lighting with seven colour choices, electric folding mirrors with puddle lights and alloy wheels.

As the only four-cylinder in the range the entry-level 1.6-litre manual-only, D2 diesel produced 84kW and 270Nm for 0-100km/h in 11.9 seconds and 4.2 litres per 100 kilometres.

The five-cylinder, 2.0-litre D4 diesel delivered 130kW and 400Nm, resulting in 0-100km/h in 8.6 seconds for the six-speed manual and 8.3s for the automatic, with fuel consumption is rated at 4.9L/100km (manual) and 5.3L/100km (auto).

A 2.0-litre auto-only turbo-petrol T4 developed 132kW and 300Nm, with 0-100km/h coming up in 8.7 seconds and fuel use of 7.6L/100km.

The 2.5-litre turbo-petrol of the range-topping T5 punched out 187kW and 360Nm, blasting to triple digits in 6.1 seconds on the way to a 250km/h top speed, and consumed 8.1L/100km on average.

Entry-level Kinetic spec was available with all engine choices apart from the T5 and upping to to Luxury (exclusive to the D4 diesel and T4 petrol) added sat-nav with seven-inch screen that doubled as a display for the reversing camera and DVD player, leather upholstery, electric passenger seat adjustment, adaptive Xenon headlights and an automatic transmission (on the D4).

Exclusive to the T5 was a sports-oriented R-Design trim level that with sports seats trimmed in perforated leather and suede-like nubuck fabric, sporty interior and exterior embellishments and uprated lowered suspension.

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