XC40 is Volvos smallest SUV yet; new CMA architecture will underpin upcoming 40 series cars plus Geely and Lynk models

XC40 is Volvo's smallest SUV yet; new CMA architecture will underpin upcoming 40 series cars plus Geely and Lynk models

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Volvo has launched the XC40, its first new model on the Compact Medium Architecture (CMA), which completes its global range of premium SUVs. Images and video were 'leaked' to the media by Volvo Hungary last week.

The automaker is also claiming to "reinvent the traditional model of car ownership" with its new Care by Volvo, available for on the XC40 from launch (depending on market) which, it says "makes having a car as transparent, easy and hassle free as having a phone".

"A monthly flat fee subscription means down payments, price negotiations and local price differences belong to the past," Volvo said.

"Depending on market, Care by Volvo will also include access to a range of digital concierge services such as fuelling, cleaning, service pick-up and e-commerce delivery to the car. The XC40 is available to order online from today (21 September) in some markets.

XC40 drivers will also be the first Volvo owners able to share their car with friends and family via Volvo on Call with a new digital key technology. Car Sharing comes as standard with Care by Volvo.

"For the first time in its history, Volvo Cars has three new, globally available SUVs in what is the fastest-growing segment of the automotive market, paving the way for further growth in terms of sales and profitability," the Geely-owned automaker said in a statement.

The new CMA modular vehicle architecture will also underpin all other upcoming cars in the 40 series, including fully electrified vehicles. Co-developed within Geely, CMA provides the company with the necessary economies of scale for this segment.

Order books for the new SUV opened in many markets today while, according to just-auto's PLDB, the XC40 will commence production at Volvo's plant in Ghent, Belgium, in November. Production is also expected at Luqiao, a district of the eastern China city of Taizhou, 350km south of Shanghai. The Luqiao plant, which is owned by Zhejiang Geely Holdings but operated by Volvo Cars, will make also make Volvo's next range of 40-series CMA-based cars plus CMA-based models for the new Lynk & Co brand.

"The XC40 is our first entry in the small SUV segment, broadening the appeal of the Volvo brand and moving it in a new direction," said Volvo Cars president and chief executive Hakan Samuelsson.

"It represents a fresh, creative and distinctive new member of the Volvo line-up."

Most of the powertrains and technology introduced on recently redesigned Volvo models such as the larger XC90 and XC60 SUVs and the S90/V90 sedan/wagon have migrated down to the XC40. Safety and driver assistance features on the XC40 include the Pilot Assist  lane keep assist system, City Safety (emergency stop), Run-off Road Protection and Mitigation, Cross Traffic Alert with brake support, and the 360° all-round-view camera that helps drivers manoeuvre their car into tight parking spaces.

Volvo also claims "a radical new approach to storage inside the car" such as more functional storage space in the doors and under the seats, a dedicated space for phones (including inductive charging), a fold-out hook for small bags and a removable waste bin in the tunnel console.

From the start of production, the XC40 will be available with Volvo's proven D4 diesel or T5 petrol four-cylinder Drive-E powertrains. Further powertrain options, including hybridised (expected to be called T5), as well as a pure electric version (Volvo's first since the C30 BEV first shown at the 2010 Detroit show), will be added later. The XC40 will also be the first Volvo model with the automaker's new three cylinder engine.