JUST as Volvo is launching its new V40 hatch to replace the existing S40 saloon and V50 estate I decided to take a look at the current stock as secondhand buys.
It doesn’t seem possible that they have been on the market for eight years because both are still modern and good looking from all angles.
Most are front wheel drive but there are some four wheel drive models which I remember having great fun with on a frozen lake in Lapland some time ago.
Handling is safe and sure, safety is right up with the very best and road-holding sticky and sporty. But the ride can be a bit lumpy at times.
Engines range up from a 1.6 petrol with 98bhp to a 2.5 with 220, and diesels go from 110bhp to 177bhp.
Gearboxes are five or six-speed manual or five-speed automatic, the clutch is a little on the heavy side in manuals and the power steering is excellent at all speeds.
Inside is high quality fit and finish throughout with plenty of style and hip hugging seats.
Equipment is never lacking even in the cheapest, with climate, CD stereo, alloys and electric windows all round.
Price: Pay £10,700 for an ’09 09-reg S40 SE saloon or £14,500 for a ’10 10-reg V50 R-Design estate
Mechanical: 115bhp, 1,560cc, 4cyl diesel engine driving front wheels via 6-speed manual gearbox
Max speed: 121mph
0-62mph: 11.5 seconds
Combined mpg: 74
Insurance group: 21
CO2 emissions: 99g/km
Main rival: VW Golf