Volvo's face-lifted V40 hatchback does its best XC90 impression

The all-new Volvo V90 station wagon will share the spotlight at next week’s Geneva Auto Show with a face-lifted version of the V40, a compact hatchback designed largely for the European market.

The 4-year-old V40 adopts a new front end that falls in line with Volvo’s current design language. The updates are limited to redesigned headlights that incorporate Thor’s Hammer, the name given to Volvo’s T-shaped LED daytime running lights, and a new grille with vertical slats as well as a modernized Volvo emblem. The Swedish car maker hasn’t made any perceptible changes to the back end, though careful observers will notice the V40 gets a handful of additional paint colors and new alloy wheel designs.

The passengers benefit from Volvo’s CleanZone technology, which filters the outside air before it enters the cabin to get rid of harmful pollutants. Additionally, the 2017 V40 is compatible with Volvo On Call, a smartphone and smartwatch application that lets owners find their car in a parking garage, remotely set the climate control, as well as lock and unlock it.

Mechanically, the V40 carries on with gasoline- and diesel-burning four-cylinder engines. The entry-level mill is a 2.0-liter unit that makes 122 horsepower, while the one that packs the most powerful punch is a 2.0-liter that delivers 245 horsepower and 258 lb-ft. of torque thanks to a large turbocharger. Buyers who need all-wheel drive can select the V40 Cross Country, which also brings a few extra inches of ground clearance and rugged styling cues such as black trim on the lower bumper and on the rocker panels.

The 2017 Volvo V40 will begin arriving in showrooms in the next few months … at least in Europe. The smallest member of the Volvo lineup can’t be sold here because it wasn’t developed with US regulations in mind, and the facelift has done nothing to change that. However, Volvo has strongly hinted the next V40 that will bow in a couple of years’ time will take on the Volkswagen Golf on our side of the pond.

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