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Used test: Range Rover Evoque vs Volvo XC40 interiors

At four years old, these luxurious SUVs are around £14,000 cheaper than their respective new car prices, but is the Evoque or XC40 the better buy?...

2019 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque dashboard RHD

Interiors

Driving position, visibility, build quality, practicality

Our two contenders come with electrically adjustable driver’s seats, but it's only the Volvo XC40 that has a memory function. There’s no doubt which seat is the comfiest, though: the XC40’s figure-hugger, which includes an extendable base and lumbar support adjustment.

Disappointingly, to get lumbar adjustment in the Range Rover Evoque, you better hope the original owner paid £690 for the 14-way seat; without it, some of our testers found the shortage of lower back support a problem.

Volvo XC40 interior

Other than that, it’s personal choice as to whether the Evoque’s cosseting, wrap-around interior or the XC40’s equally pleasing but more open and airier feel is better. Both are nigh on perfect in other respects and deliver an authentic, high-set SUV experience. 

The XC40 has a central infotainment touchscreen operates many features, even down to the interior temperature. Ordinarily, the Evoque features more physical controls, but our car has the optional-from-new Touch Pro Duo system, which adds a second touchscreen below the infotainment one. It’s easier to operate than the XC40’s display, because a couple of physical dials are integrated. These change function depending on which menu you’re in; for example, in the climate screen, they work the temperature and fan speed.

2019 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque rear seats RHD

The Evoque has front and rear parking sensors, as well as a rear-view camera, while the XC40 only has rear sensors (as standard from new). The Evoque has another useful optional feature: the rear-view mirror can change into a camera feed. If the boot is loaded to the roof, blocking your natural vision, it will display what’s behind while you’re driving along – this feature cost the original owner an extra £315. Both cars have LED headlights.

Now, these are premium SUVs, so do they feel plush enough? Yes, very much so. Ordinarily, they would feature leather seats (leather and nubuck for the XC40), but our Evoque has eucalyptus fabric seats – a no-cost option when new. The Evoque and XC40 both have high-quality materials elsewhere, with very few low-rent plastics. 

Volvo XC40 rear seats

The XC40 has less head room, but only by dint of the optional-from-new full-length sunroof fitted to our test car. Even so, you won’t want for head or leg room in the front of either of them. In the rear, the XC40 pips the Evoque for leg room. Both can seat four tall adults relatively comfortably, but the XC40 can more easily manage a third in the back, thanks in part to its less obstructive central floor hump.

The Evoque is good for boot space, accommodating a respectable five carry-on suitcases, but the XC40 is better – it can take six.