Volvo is yet to release powertrain and performance figures but we expect the XC40 EV to have two electric motors (one on each axle) to give the XC40 four-wheel drive. A 0-62mph time of six to seven seconds is likely, as is a range of around 250 miles. Fast-charging should be fitted as standard, which would mean the battery can be charged to 80% capacity in under an hour.
The lack of a conventional engine means Volvo has had to rework the XC40 to make it as safe as the petrol and diesel models. The manufacturer says the electric version will be one of the safest cars on the road.
At the front, the crash structure has been completely redesigned and strengthened. The battery is held in a protective case in the middle of the car, which itself acts as a crumple zone for the battery. Meanwhile, the underpinnings at the rear have been changed, allowing Volvo to accommodate the electric motor without heavily compromising the boot space. We’re yet to find out whether the electric XC40 will offer exactly the same size boot as the regular model.
Volvo’s all-new ‘Advanced Driver Assistance System’ makes its debut in the XC40 EV, which uses a number of radars, sensors and cameras. The technology is scalable and adaptable, suggesting there’ll be other electric Volvos following suit. The platform is also said to provide the foundation for self-driving vehicles that are in the pipeline.
The battery pack in the electric XC40 is placed in the floor of the car, which has lowered the car’s centre of gravity. This should help the car’s driving characteristics, and has an added benefit that it makes the car less likely to roll over.
More details will be revealed before the car’s launch on Wednesday 16 October.
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