Early customer demand for Volvo's first electric car has been extremely strong.
Better late than never, Volvo is finally embracing full electrification. Revealed last year, the Volvo XC40 Recharge represents the Swedish automaker's first-ever fully electric model, so it's a very important launch. It's the first of many electric models that will be part of Volvo's new Recharged lineup, with the aim to have all-electric cars make up 50 percent of the company's global sales by 2025. Hybrid models will make up the remaining 50 percent.
Since the all-electric XC40 was unveiled in October last year, Volvo has received "keen interest" from "tens of thousands" of customers and "thousands of firm orders," which is impressive considering that sales hadn't even started.
Customer configurations for Recharge cars also counted for around a third of all configurations in the region during Q4 2019. Now, the order books have open for the Volvo XC40 Recharge in selected markets before production and sales start later this year, although pricing details still haven't been announced. Comments made by Volvo's CEO Hakan Samuelsson suggest it will cost around $50,000, which would make it much cheaper than its rivals such as the Tesla Model X ($84,990) and Jaguar I-Pace ($69,850).
"It is clear that customers like what they see in our Recharge car line," said Bjorn Annwall, head of EMEA and global commercial operations. "Our Recharge cars are everything customers expect from a Volvo, with the addition of a state-of-the-art fully electric or plug-in hybrid powertrain."
Whereas the regular Volvo XC40 is powered by a turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four gasoline engine, the all-wheel-drive XC40 Recharge packs an electric powertrain producing 408 horsepower and a WLTP-rated driving range of over 248 miles.
Using a fast-charging system, the battery can be charged up to 80 percent of its capacity in just 40 minutes. As well as being Volvo's first electric model, the XC40 Recharge is the first Volvo to feature a new Android-powered infotainment system with Google Assistant, Google Maps and Google Play Store support.