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A Volvo is for life well in Shane’s case until he rights it off!
Well, that not all together fair, okay so he hit the back of a Mercedes Lorry, then a Mondeo car rolled over the bonnet whilst he was on a single track road and then finally someone in a VW Polo hit the back of the car whist he was turning left. These incidents occurred in 300 series Volvo’s since then Shane has had on 440 SE, I have had a special edition 440 redline and currently a 440 turbo. Shane has progressed to a V40 1.8 limited edition (engine 1731cc but is a factory tuned engine) and she is gorgeous, well it is if you like this type of car! Anyway, following his accidents Shane has never been seriously hurt, he gained only minor whiplash injuries.
So why do we stick with the Volvo cars? Well it all boils down to safety and comfort at a reasonable price. I have had major back surgery recently and am due for some more in the future so sitting in a comfortable car is very important to me. For Shane comfort is important but with his accident track record safety comes high up on the list. Not only that we have our nieces and Godchildren often to stay and I would not be happy in a lesser car!
All new V40’s with five seats have three-point safety belts, with pre-tensioner at the front of the belts. In an impact, the pre-tensioners are activated, tightening to give maximum protection. The front-seat safety belts then release a little so that the driver and front-seat passenger are cushioned by the airbag in a controlled manner. I have yet to try this out and never really want to! The airbag inflates in one of two ways to provide approximately the correct protection that the incident requires. Firstly full pressure is deployed in a severe impact, whilst reduced pressure is deployed during a milder one. If the impact is even less and the airbag is not required, then only the pre-tensioners are activated.
One quarter of all sever car accidents occur when a car is hit from the side. With this statistic in mind Volvo developed the ‘Side-Impact Protection System’ (or you may hear it called SIPS). It was unique to Volvo but has now been adopted by many other car manufactures. This is great as it helps to reduce injuries and they are not much fun to operate on in the middle of the night, believe me! (Yes I was a theatre/x-ray nurse in a busy London teaching hospital).
The Volvo V40 has this system fitted as standard and ‘Side-Impact Protection System’ helps to disperse a large part of the collision force that would might penetrate through the side via the floor pan, members, pillars, roof and possibly other parts of the car body.
The side-impact airbags provide protection to the vital organs, such as the body’s rib cage does to the torso. ‘Side-Impact Protection System’ are fitted to the outer edge of the two front seats and not as many assume in the door. This means that they are always positioned securely by your side, however far forward or back you adjust or recline your seat.
Then there is the ‘Inflatable Curtain’ (IC) that protects the head during a side collision. This is a new type of airbag that is fitted out of sight within the car and can be found along each side of the headliner. The ‘Inflatable Curtain’ provides equal protection for both the front and rear-seat passengers. This curtain remains inflated for about three seconds in order to provide highest protection possible during a complex collision sequences.
In a rear-end collisions, even at relatively low speeds, often cause back and neck injuries. Such whiplash injuries often result in lifelong problems. (Tell me about it, but that is another story!). ‘Whiplash Protection System’ (WHIPS) is another Volvo's patented method for reducing the strain on the neck and spine that is a common Road Traffic Accident injury. Again the ‘Whiplash Protection System’ is built into the front seats of the car and become automatically activated when a sufficiently severe impact is felt from behind.
Anyway a Volvo is for life. Many people refer to them as workhorse. Well that is true. It also makes a great family car as well as being equipped for the businessman too. She works hard for us as well. The boot of the V40 is very large. We have had a sofa in our V40. At Christmas, Shane transported Scamp (the fourteen year old mutt!), Shaggie (the Lurcher of a year old) and Max (the cat with only five teeth) to my mother’s home, along with myself, our case, animal food for a week ten bottles of two and three litre soft drinks, a food hamper, Christmas gifts, college books, my computers and Shaggie's indoor kennel. Yes there was also room left to swing a cat too!
With rear-seat backrest completely down: 751 litres (To Glass Line) / 1421 litres (To Roof) Max Payload: 520 kg ((Bi-Fuel 459 kg) Max Roof Load: 100 kg Max Trailer Weight: 1200 - 1400 kg (depending on model)
The Volvo V40 also helps you extends your freedom. It is now a distinctly sporty machine and among the safest in its class (as I have already demonstrated). She is also packed with ingenious solutions and, not least, outstandingly entertaining driving. Shane loves it!
The beautifully elegant V40 that we own graces the road with her air conditioning, an advanced alarm, ash tray with cigarette lighter, Audio system HU-605 RDS, Auxiliary lamps, Bag holder, Cabin filter, Centrally-operated lock, Comfort upholstery, electric Cruise control, Door handle guard, Electric windows, Electrically-adjustable seats, Exterior temperature gauge, Flush-fitting load area cover, Fog lights, Front reading lamps, Grocery bag holder, Headlamp wash/wipe, Heated front seats, High-performance loudspeakers, Information Centre, Kick guard, Load Compensating Suspension, Load lashing loops, Load retention straps, Load securing straps, Lockable wheel nuts...
I will stop here as the list goes on and on and on!
**So why not build your own Volvo V40 1.8 (122 BHP)**
There are so many accessories to choose from. Firstly you start with the platform, currently consisting of: Engine type: Four-cylinder petrol engine Displacement: 1783 cc Power output: 90 kW (122 bhp) at 5800 rpm Torque: 170 Nm at 4000 rpm Acceleration 0-62 mph, man: 10.5 Top speed, man: 124 mph Fuel consumption mpg (litres/100 km), Combined driving, man: 40.9 (6.9) Government Approved Engine Capacity: 1783 CO2 emission, g/km, man: 164 Transmission: Five-speed manual gearbox or five-speed adaptive automatic
Warranty: The Volvo warranty covers 3 years or 60 000 miles, whichever comes first. In addition, there’s a 3 year unlimited mileage paintwork warranty and a full 8 years warranty against rust perforation. (This final piece of information on Volvo V40 1.8 (122 BHP can be found at www.volvouk.co.uk).
NB There are standard models avalible too starting at around £12,000.00 for a basic model.
Anyway we brought our Volvo V40 at three years old with 38,000 miles on the clock for under £10,000.00, from a Volvo dealer. I came with one full years warranty, years road tax, new MOT and the garage part-exchanged it with Shane’s 440se. We have both been very satisfied with this car and would recommend it to anyone. In fact our friends have brought one on our recommendation and no we did not get commission!
Now as to her name well, she does not have one yet! If you have any ideas let me know. Yes, our car is for life and not just for Christmas!
I recently bought a V40 1.8s after letting go of my much loved 440xi, which I had for 9 years. This review is exactly what I would have said, only much better.
mrmessy2 27.04.2005 19:58
Excellent review, will be buying my first volvo v70 in a few weeks, with a baby on the way it is great to know just how safe they are. Thanks!
burk 19.02.2002 11:14
Really for life? ;-))) - I had a 66 long time ago, and rust made it through the whole right side. If somebody would have tried, the seatbelts could be pulled out of the mount with a hard twitch. :-// Okay, it was built 1973 and already 14 years old, as it was like that. ;-)))) So I left it at the scrapyard as the German 'TÜV' (technical inspection of vehicles every two years) told me about it. How about rust at the newer ones, or don't you hold them that long to know about it? :-) -- cu, Burkard