Volvo XC40 plug-in hybrid long-term test: report 6

What Car? Award-winning family SUV is now available as a plug-in hybrid, so is it the best choice for buyers seeking practical but economical motoring? We have four months to find out...

Darren sitting in Volvo XC40

The car Volvo XC40 Recharge T5 Inscription Pro Run by Darren Moss, deputy editor

Why it’s here To show that choosing a greener car need not lead to compromises for either lifestyle or driving fun

Needs to Offer lower running costs than an equivalent combustion-engined car, be practical for longer holiday trips and function as a mobile office when needed

Mileage 1605 List price £42,350 Target Price £40,025 Price as tested £47,055 Test economy 39.1mpg 

26 October 2020 – Spectacular seats

Comfort is important to me in any car, and I'm pleased to report that the Volvo XC40 has some of the comfiest seats in the family SUV class. After spending time in many different cars recently, I'm always glad to slide back onto the smooth leather of the XC40’s driver’s seat, which is as welcoming as a favourite armchair. I could imagine myself sitting in it of an evening, wearing my slippers and with a copy of What Car? close to hand.

The seat itself has a wide base and lots of side support, so that if I choose to attack corners more vigorously than usual, I won’t be sliding anywhere. And thanks to the heated front seats, the cold October mornings haven’t left me shivering while waiting for the car to warm up, either. My only gripe with the XC40’s driver’s seat is that I wish the base extended outwards a bit farther at the front, because taller drivers can be robbed of optimum under-thigh support.