2023 Volvo XC40 Recharge Pure Electric: Single-motor variant set for Australia


Volvo’s popular small electric SUV is on track to gain a new, more affordable variant next year, with less power and range in exchange for a lower price.

Above and below: Updated 2023 Volvo XC40 Recharge Pure Electric.

Volvo Australia is poised to introduce a more affordable, single-motor version of its 2023 Volvo XC40 Recharge Pure Electric small SUV, as part of the updated range due in the third quarter of 2022 (July to September).

While a local launch is yet to be officially finalised, a local Volvo spokesperson confirmed to Drive the Swedish car maker was “fast-tracking a business case to include the variant”, which would arrive as part of the facelifted Model Year 2023 XC40 range due after July 2022, as revealed last week.

The single-motor model’s introduction follows overwhelming demand for the dual-motor, all-wheel-drive model introduced in Australia in August 2021; the entire Australian-market Model Year 2022 allocation of which has now sold out.

“Our entire [MY22] production of the XC40 Recharge Pure Electric has now been spoken for. So we are desperately working with our [European] colleagues on the next model year production … i.e. ramping up even more than our original allocation … such has been the demand, and to that end we will include a second variant [in the MY23 range],” a Volvo Australia spokesperson said.

Speaking to Drive in July, a spokesperson said “no decision” had been made on the single-motor XC40 for Australia, saying Volvo would “for now will stay with that offering [of the dual-motor only]” – indicating the single-motor variant’s return to Volvo Australia’s radar occurred recently, likely as a result of dual-motor demand.

Powering the XC40 Recharge Pure Electric Single Motor is one 170kW/330Nm electric motor on the front axle – shared with the related Polestar 2 Long Range Single Motor – mated to a 69kWh (net) lithium-ion battery delivering a 7.4-second 0-100km/h time.

Volvo’s European websites claim up to 421km of driving range in pre-facelift form, with the updated model gaining a new 19-inch alloy wheel design that boosts range towards 424km.

Those figures represent steps back from the range-topping model, which features two electric motors and a 78kWh battery to produce 300kW and 660Nm, powering all four wheels for a 4.9-second 0-100km/h sprint time and 418km of range. Both electric XC40 models offer 150kW DC fast charging.

The current, pre-facelift Volvo XC40 Recharge Pure Electric.

Pricing and specifications for the cheaper variant are yet to be confirmed, however expect a lower entry price than the $76,990 before on-road costs of the dual-motor variant on sale today – likely to undercut its key front-wheel-drive electric SUV rival, the new $74,000 Lexus UX300e Luxury.

The allocation of said dual-motor model has been exhausted for the remainder of Model Year 2022, just a few months after its local launch in August 2021. The XC40 Recharge Pure Electric accounted for 21 per cent of all Volvo sales in September – equating to around 129 cars – Volvo confirmed earlier this month.

While a Volvo Australia spokesperson couldn’t confirm exactly how many electric XC40s have been allocated to Australia for MY22, they indicated to Drive it was in the region of “the multiple of hundreds”.

Stay tuned to Drive for all the latest updates on the 2023 Volvo XC40 Recharge Pure Electric Single Motor, as its local launch approaches.

Alex Misoyannis has been writing about cars since 2017, when he started his own website, Redline. He contributed for Drive in 2018, before joining CarAdvice in 2019, becoming a regular contributing journalist within the news team in 2020. Cars have played a central role throughout Alex’s life, from flicking through car magazines as a young age, to growing up around performance vehicles in a car-loving family.

Read more about Alex Misoyannis