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Volvo XC40 Electric interior

The electric XC40’s interior is much the same as the regular petrol or diesel models, but features a more up-to-date infotainment system.

Style

Fully electric Volvo XC40 introduces brand new infotainment system

Don’t expect wacky controls and a futuristic redesign for the cabin of the battery-powered Volvo XC40: it’s all pretty familiar in here.

While some might bemoan the lack of a bold interior change, you’ll find the familiarity of the design and layout comforting if you’ve spent time in any Volvo from the last five years or so. The minimalist look features good overall material quality and a general sense of calm.

The dash layout is straightforward and easy to get along with, with a smattering of physical buttons below the infotainment screen. And although there are some areas with scratchier plastics than in, say, a BMW X1, on the whole the XC40 feels and looks plush inside.

The only caveat is that, surprisingly, leather is an optional extra outside of the existing upgrade packs. You can either have full leather for £900 or a mix of leather, fabric and vinyl for £650, and while it’s commendable that Volvo is pushing the more environmentally friendly textile option first, you’d be forgiven for expecting cow hide as standard in a car this price.

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Infotainment

Fully electric Volvo XC40 introduces brand new infotainment system

You might take one look at the XC40 Electric’s portrait-oriented central infotainment screen and assume it’s just the same as the (rather dated) system found in other Volvos, but you’d be quite wrong.

Instead, Volvo has used the new electric model to debut its very latest software – very similar to that found in the Polestar 2, which also shares its electric drive system with this model.  It’s clear and the graphics are super sharp, but the best thing about it is that it’s fully Android based. It’s a system designed for use in cars, rather than just linking your phone to the screen.

This means it’s a step ahead of even Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, which aren’t needed with this system. It’s super-easy to navigate and has all the features you need, plus with Google Maps the sat-nav is fantastic.

You can customise the layout and sign in with your Google account to remember your preferences and use your apps, such as Spotify. We reckon it’s one of the best infotainment systems in any car you can buy right now, although it can still be a little fiddly to adjust the temperature when compared to a stack of physical buttons or dials.

There’s also a digital driver’s display instead of normal dials, which can be used to show sat-nav directions and maps as well as all sorts of driving data. It’s clear and can show range and charging too. It’s a bit dark but that means it’s not distracting when you’re driving, while the map display is very nicely integrated.

 

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