A new era is underway.
The Volvo C40 Recharge has the distinction of being the Swedish automaker's first model that has no combustion-engined counterpart. The XC40 Recharge is the all-electric version of the gas-powered XC40. Both Recharge models, however, share a platform. The C40 Recharge equally represents the future of the carmaker, which aims to sell only fully electric models by 2030. A decade later, the goal is to be a climate-neutral company. Both are ambitious goals.
Earlier this week, Volvo took a major first step towards its future. Production of the C40 Recharge officially got underway at Volvo's manufacturing facility in Ghent, Belgium. The XC40 Recharge is also assembled there. Ghent will eventually be producing 135,000 vehicles annually. In 2022, more than half of its production volume will be all-electric models.
"The C40 Recharge is a car that represents our future," said Javier Varela, senior vice president for industrial operations and quality at Volvo Cars. "Our Ghent plant is ready for an all-electric future and will be an important part of our global industrial network for the years to come."
If all goes to plan, a full 50 percent of Volvo's global sales will consist of EVs by 2025. Those who plan to buy a C40 Recharge will need to come with a healthy bank account, first and foremost. The crossover coupe will carry a starting price tag of $58,750 before the $7,500 federal tax credit and any other state-level incentives.
That's quite a bit more than one of its closest rivals, the Audi Q4 e-tron ($43,900). The Tesla Model Y also costs less, starting at almost $55,000. C40 Recharge buyers will enjoy plenty of premium features for that price, such as an infotainment system jointly developed with Google. Assuming you've got an Android smartphone, software like Google Apps and built-in services like Google Assistant, Maps, and Play should work flawlessly.
Like the XC40 Recharge, the C40 receives regular over-the-air updates. Power comes from dual electric motors, one at each axle. A 78-kWh battery provides the necessary juice to keep things running, and it can be charged from 10 to 80 percent in only 40 minutes.