2024 Volvo Ex30 Review: Interior, Range, Reliability
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2024 Volvo Ex30 Review

Imagine the Volvo EX90 as a spacious, cozy Scandinavian country house. Now, think of the new EX30 as a chic, modern apartment in downtown Stockholm – compact, budget-friendly, and equally stylish. This delightful little SUV has rightfully earned the title of 2024 Carwow Car of the Year, and here’s why it’s a standout.

Despite being the smallest SUV in Volvo’s lineup, the EX30 doesn’t skimp on style. Its exterior is sleek and contemporary, maintaining that signature minimalist Volvo aesthetic. Inside, the cabin continues this theme with clean lines and a functional layout. There are more scratchy plastics lower in the cabin than you might expect, but features like metal door handles and a large, bright infotainment screen add a touch of class.

The EX30 makes the most of its compact size with some clever storage solutions. There’s a unique central glovebox and a fold-out tray revealing hidden compartments between the seats. The large door bins and pop-out cup holders from the armrest add to the practicality. While rear seat space is a bit tight, especially for taller passengers, and fitting child seats can be challenging, the seats are comfortable, and there’s plenty of headroom.

2024 Volvo Ex30 Price and Competitiveness

2024 Volvo Ex30 Price
2024 Volvo Ex30 Price

The Volvo EX30, the newest addition to Volvo’s electric SUV lineup, offers a range of prices and options that make it an attractive choice for buyers.

Pricing Breakdown

  • RRP Range: £33,795 to £44,495
  • Cash Price: Starting at £33,795
  • Monthly Payments: Starting at £442
  • Used EX30 on Carwow: Starting at £35,521

When comparing the EX30 to its competitors, it stands out as a competitively priced option. The Smart #1 is slightly more expensive, but it lacks the badge appeal of the Volvo. The Kia Niro EV and Nissan Ariya are pricier still, though they are both larger vehicles. If you’re willing to stretch your budget a bit further, the Skoda Enyaq, known for its practicality, falls into a similar price bracket around £40,000.

Performance and Drive Comfort

Performance and Drive Comfort

The Volvo EX30 excels in comfort, making it an enjoyable ride both in the city and on the motorway.

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In Town

The EX30 feels right at home navigating urban environments. The low dashboard enhances visibility, although the front pillars are a bit chunky and the rear window is relatively small. It’s easy to maneuver into tight spots thanks to its light steering and the ease of one-pedal driving, which brings the car to a complete stop when you lift off the accelerator. While the braking isn’t as strong as some other EVs, the overall driving experience remains smooth. The car handles bumps and potholes exceptionally well, providing a refined, comfortable ride reminiscent of larger, more luxurious SUVs.

On the Motorway

This comfort extends to motorway driving. The seats are designed for long-distance comfort, and the interior feels airy and spacious, so you won’t feel cramped after hours on the road. There is a bit of wind and tyre noise, but nothing too bothersome. The more powerful Performance version offers instant throttle response, making overtakes and merging into traffic a breeze. The single-motor version, while not as rapid, still provides sufficient power.

Volvo’s Pilot Assist system, which includes adaptive cruise control and a lane-keeping assistant, comes as standard. The adaptive cruise control can sometimes be overly cautious, slowing down unnecessarily before resuming the set speed, but it generally enhances the driving experience by reducing fatigue on long trips.

On a Twisty Road

The Volvo EX30 – what a ride! You’d think a car focused on comfort might struggle with a twisty road, but the EX30, especially in its Performance version, proves to be quite the contrary. Punching the accelerator out of corners brings an unstoppable smile to your face, thanks to the sheer power under the hood. It’s an exhilarating experience that you don’t expect from a car primarily designed for comfort.

However, not everything is perfect when you try to push it like a sports car. The tyres start to scream for grip, and the body leans more than you’d like, shaking your confidence a bit. The light steering, though great for city driving, doesn’t help much when you’re trying to be precise at higher speeds. Sure, you can tweak the settings to make the steering firmer, but doing that while driving isn’t the easiest task. This isn’t unique to the EX30; other small electric SUVs like the Smart #1 have similar quirks. If you’re craving the ultimate fun on those bends, the Kia Niro EV might be a better pick – although, let’s be real, none of these are pretending to be sports cars.

Space and Practicality

Now, let’s talk about space and practicality – because who doesn’t love a roomy, well-thought-out car?

Front seat space in the EX30 is pretty commendable. With lots of adjustability in both the seat and steering wheel, getting a perfect driving position is a breeze. Whether you like your seat sky-high or practically on the floor, this car accommodates. Tall drivers, take note: the central dash might crowd your left knee a bit, but the headroom is nothing short of excellent.

The dashboard has an interesting design, swooping up to make room for your legs and housing the central glovebox. Opening this glovebox via the touchscreen is quirky but functional, even if it’s not the most spacious.

One thing you won’t find is a traditional armrest cubby hole. Instead, you get a clever storage area accessible to rear passengers. With a push of a button, hidden cupholders emerge, adjustable to fit either one or two cups. The rubber grips inside these holders are versatile, handling both big and small bottles, and they’re removable if you need extra storage.

Below this area, there’s a long tray perfect for stashing loose items. It’s cleverly designed to open up more hidden storage. Plus, you’ve got a couple of USB-C slots here, and just ahead, a wireless charging pad for two smartphones.

The door bins are deep, but somewhat narrow, so don’t expect them to fit your bulkier water bottles easily.

2024 Volvo EX30 Interior

When you step inside the 2024 Volvo EX30 Electric SUV, there’s no denying it looks cool. It has that typical Volvo minimalist appeal, with a swooping lower dashboard section and little else but vertical air vents and a 12.3-inch portrait-oriented touchscreen. This minimalist design provides a clean and sophisticated look, typical of the Volvo brand.

Character and Charm

Where bigger Volvos have a serious, sophisticated essence, the Volvo EX30 electric SUV is a bit more characterful. Depending on the specification, there’s a speckled trim piece that runs from the doors right across the dashboard. This trim is subtle enough to avoid being garish but colorful enough to give the cabin a fun little lift. Alternatively, you might find an almost hessian-like material that’s both cool and quirky, adding a unique touch to the interior.

Quality Touches

There are some design touches that make the EX30 feel worthy of the posh Volvo badge on the bonnet. Floating armrests in the doors and chrome door handles are standout features. The steering wheel feels quality in your hands, as does most of the stuff you touch regularly.

However, once you start prodding here and there, you will find some scratchy plastics, such as in the lower dashboard and door trims. That said, the overall perception is one of quality, and these don’t feel like deal-breaking sacrifices when you consider this is such an affordable electric SUV.

Infotainment System

The infotainment system helps elevate things. The screen is big and bright, and the menus are easy to navigate. Having an integrated Google system works well, as you get Google Maps (with a display to estimate your battery charge on arrival at your destination) and Spotify right out of the box, with other apps available to download. It means you won’t miss Android Auto, even though you will still need to connect your phone through Bluetooth to make phone calls, while wireless Apple CarPlay is included.

The Downsides

Now, for the not-so-good news: It’s a bit annoying that you have to control everything through this display, from the glovebox to the door mirrors. This setup is not intuitive for quickly changing things. The speedometer being off to the side at the top of the display isn’t great either, as you’re constantly glancing away from the road to check your speed. The fonts, such as your current battery charge, are tiny, which isn’t ideal. A head-up display would be a useful option.

Room for Improvement

It’s also fiddly to change your assistance settings on the move and requires quite a few button presses. There’s a shortcut button on the wheel, which would be a useful way to skip straight to the assistance menu, but that’s not currently possible. Sure, you would get used to a lot of this over time, but it feels like the whole system could do with streamlining. It doesn’t feel particularly safe having to look across away from the road so often.

2024 Volvo EX30 Range, Charging, and Tax:

The 2024 Volvo EX30 Electric SUV offers three distinct motor and battery combinations, ensuring there’s a model to suit different needs and preferences.

  1. Single Motor:
    • Performance: Sends 272hp to the rear wheels.
    • 0-62mph Time: 5.7 seconds.
    • Battery: 51kWh.
    • Range: 214 miles.
  2. Single Motor Extended Range:
    • Performance: Uses the same single-motor setup as the base model.
    • 0-62mph Time: 5.3 seconds.
    • Battery: 69kWh.
    • Range: 299 miles.
  3. Twin Motor Performance:
    • Performance: Motors on both axles for all-wheel drive.
    • Output: 428hp.
    • 0-62mph Time: 3.6 seconds.
    • Battery: 69kWh.
    • Range: 286 miles (official figures).

Real-World Efficiency

During our time with the Performance version, we averaged 3.5 miles per kWh, which translates to a range of about 221 miles—approximately 77% of the claimed figure. It’s worth noting that this was achieved while enjoying the vehicle’s power on twisty roads, so driving more economically should yield better results.

In contrast, a drive in the single-motor model yielded 3.9 miles per kWh, resulting in a real-world range of 247 miles. This is an impressive 89% of the claimed range, showcasing the model’s efficiency.

Tax Benefits

Being electric, all versions of the Volvo EX30 electric SUV have favorable road tax conditions. They pay nothing in the first year, before defaulting to the standard rate from year two. It’s important to note that top-spec models priced over £40,000 face an additional charge in years two to six.

For company car buyers, the EX30 is particularly appealing, with a benefit-in-kind rate of just 2% until 2025, increasing to 3% thereafter.

Safety and Security

While the Volvo EX30 has not yet been put through Euro NCAP safety testing, Volvo’s excellent reputation for building some of the safest cars around offers peace of mind. The EX30 comes equipped with numerous assistance technologies, including various collision avoidance systems and adaptive cruise control.

Top-spec Ultra models also feature advanced systems like automatic parking and a 360-degree camera view, making it easier to navigate tight spots and enhancing overall safety.

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