NEW FOR 2008:
– New grille with larger emblem, headlamps, lower intake, taillamps and rear bumper
– New centre console and inside door panels with increased storage capacity
– Turbocharged 2.5-litre receives 9 horsepower increase to 227 hp
– Optional active bi-Xenon headlamps
– Standard dynamic stability and traction control
– Brake lights feature flashing Emergency Brake Lights function
– New features on optional DynAudio stereo package, including Alpine digital amplifier and new speakers
– High Performance and Premium Sound systems add MP3 and WMA format
– All stereo systems include auxiliary audio jack
For 2008, the Volvo S40 receives a mild facelift that makes it look more like the larger S80, along with upgrades to its standard and optional features.
The S40 sedan is available as the 2.4i, with 2.4-litre five-cylinder engine, as the T5, with turbocharged 2.5-litre five-cylinder engine, and as the T5 AWD, with electronically-controlled all-wheel drive system. The 2.4i uses a five-speed manual, the T5 models a six-speed manual; all can be optioned to a five-speed automatic with manual shift mode.
Features on the 2.4i include 16-inch steel wheels, manual climate control, T-Tec fabric seats, keyless entry, comfort chassis, heated mirrors with integrated turn signals, rear fog light, floor mats, outside temperature gauge, 60/40 folding rear seat, cruise control, front and rear reading lamps, power windows, locking glove-box, tilt and telescopic steering wheel, CD stereo and intermittent wipers.
The 2.5T adds 16-inch alloy wheels, dual-zone automatic climate control, front fog lights, power sunroof, three-spoke leather steering wheel, aluminum inlays, and wheel-mounted audio controls.
The 2.5T AWD adds Dynamic Chassis suspension.
Sharing its platform with the Mazda3, the S40’s ride is on the firm side, but handling is light and quick and it’s fun to drive. Both engines move this small car out very well, and there’s no turbo lag on the T5. The seats are comfortable and the build quality is good, but while storage space has improved slightly, there’s still not a lot of space for small item-storage, and heater and stereo controls are small and fiddly. Drivers with large feet may also find the footwells cramped and the small pedals too closely spaced.