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Used Volvo V40 Cross Country review

The Volvo V40 Cross Country is an unusual machine. Essentially a slightly raised and more rugged version of the Volvo V40, it’s not quite an SUV and not quite a normal hatchback. It is, however, probably the safest car of its size thanks to Volvo’s commitment to protecting people.

Looks?

Reassuring. That’s the word to describe driving a Volvo V40 Cross Country. Riding just that bit higher than a normal hatchback, you get an improved view of the road and a comfortable ride. Most Volvo V40 Cross Country models are front-wheel-drive. The most powerful petrol-engine cars benefit from the enhanced traction of all-wheel-drive.  

These aren’t serious off-road cars. The added ground clearance is a bonus on rough roads and city speed humps. It’s the standard-fit safety equipment that makes the Volvo V40 Cross Country really confidence-inspiring, however.  

All models feature a City Safety automatic braking system designed to prevent low-speed bumps and the car has no less than 7 airbags, including one that pops out of the bonnet to protect pedestrians. These innovations enabled the Volvo V40 Cross Country to score full marks for safety with experts Euro NCAP. 

Reassuring. That’s the word to describe driving a Volvo V40 Cross Country.

What’s it like to drive?

The understated style of the Volvo V40 Cross Country exterior design follows through inside. It’s not showy, but it is cleanly designed and built to a very high standard. If there’s a criticism it’s that the car’s once-pioneering centre console controls now feel a little dated, even if they continue to function well.  

Front passengers will find that the seats are supportive and comfortable and the leather trim in the Pro version is high-grade. Volvo provides lots of storage onboard, with a big glovebox, centre locker under the armrest, a pair of cupholders, decent-sized door pockets and a hidden area behind the ‘floating’ centre console.  

Moving to the rear, there’s enough room for 3 to sit abreast. Taller teens or adults might grumble at the headroom. A big centre armrest and pop-out cupholders make riding in the back more pleasant when there are just 2 people seated.  

Standard equipment includes DAB stereo, climate control and cruise control. Volvo also offers a range of upgrade packs to add to the car’s tech features, including enhanced safety equipment such as active cruise control, blind spot warnings and lane-keep assist. Parking cameras and a panoramic sunroof are desirable extras as well.

  

The understated style of the Volvo V40 Cross Country exterior design follows through inside.

Inside?

The Volvo V40 Cross Country is a compact car, so if you’re seeking extensive carrying capacity then you may want to look to a larger Volvo V60. A couple of full-size suitcases and a soft bag is all you’d fit into the boot without folding the rear seats.  

 A neat touch includes a split-level boot floor designed to keep your shopping bags upright on the way home from the supermarket, and it’s also very easy to fit child seats in the rear using the ISOFIX mounts. 

Practicality

The Volvo V40 Cross Country is a compact car, so if you’re seeking extensive carrying capacity then you may want to look to a larger Volvo V60. A couple of full-size suitcases and a soft bag is all you’d fit into the boot without folding the rear seats.  

A neat touch includes a split-level boot floor designed to keep your shopping bags upright on the way home from the supermarket, and it’s also very easy to fit child seats in the rear using the ISOFIX mounts. 

Running costs and reliability

The Volvo V40 Cross Country should prove to be reliable and frugal family transport. The most efficient diesel engines should cover more than 70 miles on a single gallon of fuel and produce 99g/km of CO2, which saves on road tax and company car tax.  

Even the most powerful T5 petrol version with all-wheel-drive should manage more than 40mpg. Volvo recommends servicing every 20,000 miles and the company offers service packages for new and used models.  

What cinch loves

The Volvo V40 Cross Country puts your family first. Its strong Euro NCAP score is thanks to the fitment of a host of safety kit as standard that you would have to pay extra for in rival cars.

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If you like the Volvo V40 Cross Country...

Elevated hatchbacks such as the Volvo V40 Cross Country aren’t that common, but if a compact size matters then check out these 5 alternatives: 

Audi Q3 

BMW X1 

Honda HR-V 

Mazda CX-3 

Mercedes-Benz GLA 

Use our Help Me Choose tool if you still can't decide.

Perfect for

Town and country drivers

Verdict

Good

The Volvo V40 Cross Country may not be the largest family car but it’s big on safety. It will quietly protect you and your family without show, fuss or a hefty price.

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