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Volvo XC40 T5 AWD R-Design: Be noticed

Photo courtesy of Volvo

With stand-out safety features, this is definitely not your old man’s Volvo.

Want to be noticed? Put yourself in the driver’s seat of an XC40, Volvo’s smallest SUV. With bold, youthful styling that includes contrasting paint for the roof (à la Mini), the XC40 gets plenty of complimentary attention. And getting into an XC40 can be easy with Volvo’s novel car-subscription plan that covers everything—lease charge, insurance, and maintenance—in one monthly payment.

The XC40’s interior is jazzy, too. Orange—yes, orange—carpet is available, another indication that this not your usual sober Volvo. A large tablet-like touch screen dominates the dash and controls nearly everything. Unfortunately, it requires much scrolling to adjust stuff like climate levels and seat warmers.

The interior abounds in thoughtful storage solutions, such as a removable trash bin and a secret compartment under the driver’s seat. All XC40s are well-equipped with niceties like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, leather upholstery, and a power tailgate.

The turbo 4-cylinder engine comes in two versions: 187 horsepower (T4) or 248 horsepower (T5). Drive choices are also two: FWD or AWD. The T5 is a strong performer—though there can be a lag before the turbo boost kicks in—and it can tow a hefty 3,500 pounds.

The XC40’s ride is firm, and there’s little body roll when taking corners. Unfortunately, the steering isn’t very communicative. Of course, every XC40 comes with plenty of advanced safety features—it is a Volvo, after all. 

Model years: 2019–2020
Vehicle layout: Compact SUV, 2.0-liter turbocharged inline 4 (248 hp), 8-speed automatic, AWD
MSRP: $34,700 (base), $49,000 (well equipped)
MPG, city/hwy/combined: 23/31/26
Crash-test ratings: NHTSA: not yet rated; IIHS: good (all ratings), Top Safety Pick Plus
Basic warranty: 4 years/50,000 miles
Spare tire: Temporary spare
Final assembly: Belgium

For more reviews, go to a no-hassle experience when purchasing a new or used vehicle with AAA’s free Car Buying Service. Go to or call (800) 709-7222.

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