Volvo XC40 T5 Twin Engine plug-in hybrid: Volvo adds compact SUV to PHEV range

New £40,905 XC40 T5 hybrid promises 258bhp, 38g/km CO2 and 28-mile electric range

Volvo has announced full details and UK prices of the XC40 T5 Twin Engine – a plug-in hybrid version of its smallest SUV.

It joins the larger XC60 T8 and XC90 T8 in the Volvo plug-in hybrid SUV range, with a starting price of £40,905. Order books are open now, with first UK deliveries scheduled for February 2020.

Volvo's S60 and S90 saloons, and their corresponding V60 and V90 estate versions, are also offered in plug-in hybrid form, making the Chinese-owned Swedish brand the first in the UK to offer electrified versions of every car it sells.

While the other plug-ins use a 2.0-litre, four-cylinder drivetrain Volvo calls 'T8', the XC40 marks the debut of a new 'T5' designations. This refers to a 1.5-litre, three-cylinder, 178bhp petrol engine married to an 81bhp electric motor for a total system output of 258bhp. Unlike the T8, which is four-wheel drive, the T5 sends power to the front wheels only, through a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox.

According to Volvo, preliminary calculations indicate CO2 emissions of 38g/km and fuel economy of 141.1mpg will be achieved under official testing, with a pure electric range of just over 28 miles possible from a fully charged 10.7kWh battery. Top speed is 127mph and 0-62mph takes 7.3 seconds.

Using the supplied 4.5-metre cable with a three-pin plug, the battery can be charged fully in three to six hours. Spending £50 on the optional Type 2 cable allows for faster charging from public rapid charge points, with a full charge completed in two-and-a-half hours.

The 38g/km CO2 emissions figure places the XC40 T5 in the 16% Benefit-in-Kind (BiK) company-car tax band in the UK, resulting in a monthly bill of £218 for a 40% taxpayer in the current financial year, dropping to £163 a month in 2020/21. Road tax, or Vehicle Excise Duty (VED), is £135 per year.

Volvo is offering the XC50 T5 in R-Design (£40,905), R-Design Pro (£42,305), Inscription (£41,255) and Inscription Pro (£42,305) trim levels. The T5 engine joins the two petrol and three diesel options currently offered to XC40 buyers; a fully electric, zero-emissions version will complete the line-up at some point in 2020.

The XC40 T5 doesn't currently have any direct rivals, but the forthcoming BMW X1 xDrive 25e, DS 7 Crossback E-Tense and higher-spec versions of the Peugeot 3008 Hybrid 4 and Vauxhall Grandland X Hybrid4 sister models will also offer a PHEV setup in compact SUV form.