New Volvo S40 and V50 offers refined sportiness and an increased premium feel

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  • Closer visual links with the larger Volvo models
  • Increasing numbers of younger buyers with high premium demands
  • Improved storage
  • Enhanced driving pleasure
  • New safety features
  • Audio system of world class

The design changes and improvements to the new Volvo S40 and V50 have resulted in an even better rounded and complete motoring package with enhanced premium quality, presenting excellent value for money.

While these qualities are present throughout, the ranges also offer something for every customer: From the first-time S40 2.0 and V50 2.0 buyer, to the customer who wants more power but still requires the fuel economy found in the 2.0D derivatives, or the high performance of the S40 and V50 T5. And there is the combination of luxury, performance and excellent fuel economy in the S40 and V50 D5.

The Volvo S40, volume-seller of Volvo Cars in South Africa which won the South African Guild of Motoring Journalists Car of the Year award for 2005, has been given a visual and technical make-over that gives it an even more premium quality.

Clever improvements in exterior design such as the new front grille, front spoiler and bumper, new rear lights and rear bumper, and innovative interior design and improvements including the more functional centre console, has made the S40 – and its estate sibling the V50 ¬– even better equipped to compete in the market segment for compact luxury cars.

The current generation of the Volvo S40 and V50 were introduced almost four years ago, and it presented to buyers the fine properties of the larger Volvo models in a more compact format.

In the new S40 and V50 Volvo Cars has taken this approach one step further by increasing the premium quality perception even more, and at the same time accentuating the differences between the two models. The new S40 moves closer to the Volvo S80 while the new V50 is more in line with the new V-range.

Brand values embodied in S40 and V50
The pay-off line “Volvo. for life” reflects the promise that this brand holds: That it celebrates life on the one hand through its exciting products such as the new S40 and V50, while it protects life by its continuous quest to produce more advanced active and passive safety features in its vehicles.

Part of the celebration of life is the creation of vehicles with ergonomic and harmonious design features that do not only make it functional, but also beautiful.

The elegant minimalism that forms part of the Scandinavian design philosophy which Volvo embraces, is an important element in the creation of Volvo’s cars – and particularly evident in the S40 and V50. Its purpose is to bring quality to people’s lives, just as an interior designer can create harmony, beauty and functionality in a home.

Excitement, delivered through improved and inspiring road-handling and spirited engines, is another element in the S40 and V50 package that adds to the celebration of life.

Improved storage
Both design and technical refinements in the new Volvo S40 and V50 focused on improving the models’ already highly appreciated characteristics and on tackling weaknesses identified by customers, for instance when it comes to interior storage space.

“The design team exploited every available cubic centimetre in an intelligent way. The all-new design of the centre console and the door inside panels, for instance, has increased storage capacity and added even greater flexibility to the interior,” says Fredrik Arp, president and chief executive officer of Volvo Cars.

Sharper driveline range
Five derivatives are offered in the South African S40 range, as well as in the V50. One of the derivatives, the S40 and V50 T5, has had a power upgrade in its 5-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine – from the present 162 kW to 169 kW. The engine’s maximum torque stays at 320 Nm, but previously it was delivered from 1 500 rpm to 4 800 rpm. With the upgraded engine maximum torque will be available from 1 500 rpm to 5 000 rpm.

The 6-speed manual gearbox in the Volvo S40 and V50 2.0D has undergone changes to its gear ratios for improved driveability.

The engine derivatives, including three petrol and two diesel powertrains, are the:

  • S40 & V50 2.0, with the 107 kW / 185 Nm 4-cylinder naturally aspirated petrol engine;
  • S40 & V50 2.4i, with the 125 kW / 230 Nm 5-cylinder naturally aspirated petrol engine;
  • S40 & V50 T5, with the abovementioned 5-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine, 169 kW / 320 Nm;
  • S40 & V50 2.0D, with a 100 kW / 320 Nm (at 2 000 rpm) 4-cylinder turbodiesel engine; and
  • S40 & V50 D5, delivering 132 kW / 350 Nm from its 5-cylinder turbodiesel engine. This is the same engine as the 136 kW unit found in the S60, S80 and XC90 ranges, but delivering slightly less power and torque to match the 5-speed Geartronic gearbox.

(More detailed information on the individual engine derivatives can be found in a separate media release.)

New features, including active headlights
When it comes to safety, the new S40 and V50 come with several new features:

  • Optional Active Bi-Xenon headlamps that swivel the light beam in the direction of the road when the driver turns the steering wheel;
  • The car’s hazard warning flashers are automatically activated when the airbags are deployed, a feature that helps attract the attention of other motorists in the event of a single-vehicle accident in the dark, for instance; and
  • The brake lights now have the EBL (Emergency Brake Lights) function, which causes them to flash rapidly when the driver stamps hard on the brake pedal, so as to effectively alert traffic behind the car.

Audio systems of world class
The new Volvo S40 and V50 can be specified with an audio system of absolute world class.

The most advanced of the three systems, Premium Sound, has a digital amplifier from Alpine, Dolby® Pro Logic II Surround and loudspeakers from Dynaudio of Denmark.

In the High Performance and Premium Sound systems it is possible to play CD discs with music in MP3 or WMA format. This means that the CD changer can store several hundred music tracks and give the owner access to his or her own private home music library even while on the move.

What is more, all the audio systems now come with an Auxiliary socket (AUX) for connection of other equipment such as a portable MP3 player. USB and iPod connectors are available as accessories.

Increasing percentage of buyers under 35 years
The importance of the S40 and V50 in Volvo’s model range does not only hinge on their sales success, but also on the positive effect that they have had in lowering the average age of Volvo buyers.

The S40 appeals to both young families and young professionals who aspire to a premium brand. As always Volvo offers customers the choice of a brand that suits their individual style, reflecting their preferences and careful consideration of the brand’s core values of safety, quality and environmental care.

In the V50, which competes in a relatively small segment of the South African market, younger families are offered an affordable lifestyle vehicle with great versatility and many options for using its interior space. The V50 has child booster seats in the rear seats as standard equipment, which adds to the safety features of the car. These booster seats are optional features in the S40.

Fresh figures from both the US and Europe also show that the company’s focus on younger target groups has made a significant contribution to sales.

A boost for Volvo Cars’ volume seller in SA 
The Volvo S40 has made a significant impact in the South African compact luxury car segment since its launch in 2004. Not only has the local sales performance of this model been above the best expectations – positioning South Africa in the top 5 Volvo markets globally for S40 sales numbers – but the S40 2.4i was also awarded with the SA Guild of Motoring Journalists Car of the Year title for 2005.

Worldwide the Volvo S40 and V50 did not only account for a third of Volvo Cars’ total sales volume in 2006 – they also played a vital role in reinforcing the Volvo brand. “The new models sharpen their competitiveness in every important area and I am convinced that together with the new C30, they will attract even more new and younger buyers,” says Fredrik Arp.

Locally, as Volvo Car South Africa’s volume-seller, the S40 also plays an important brand-building role through the strategy to position the company’s models with the highest possible level of standard features at competitive prices – with a positive impact on the resale value.

The prices of the S40 and V50 ranges in South Africa are most competitive, and offers exceptional value if it is compared with similarly equipped model derivatives of our main competitors. The suggested retail prices are:

S40:

  • S40 2.0 Manual  R 227 000
  • S40 2.0D Manual   R 250 000
  • S40 2.4i Manual   R 245 000
  • S40 2.4i Geartronic  R 255 000
  • S40 T5 Manual  R 274 000
  • S40 T5 Geartronic  R 284 000
  • S40 D5 Geartronic   R 285 000

V50:

  • V50 2.0 Manual   R 232 000
  • V50 2.0D Manual   R 255 000
  • V50 2.4i Manual   R 250 000
  • V50 2.4i Geartronic  R 260 000
  • V50 T5 Manual   R 279 000
  • V50 T5 Geartronic  R 289 000
  • V50 D5 Geartronic   R 290 000