Volvo Debuts EX30 Electric SUV, Its Smallest, Quickest Model Yet
The automaker expects the compact, modestly priced electric SUV will be one of its bestselling new models.
Antuan GoodwinReviews Editor / Cars
Antuan Goodwin gained his automotive knowledge the old fashioned way, by turning wrenches in a driveway and picking up speeding tickets. From drivetrain tech and electrification to car audio installs and cabin tech, if it's on wheels, Antuan is knowledgeable.
ExpertiseReviewing cars and car technology since 2008 focusing on electrification, driver assistance and infotainmentCredentials
North American Car, Truck and SUV of the Year (NACTOY) Awards Juror
The newly debuted Volvo EX30 is many things. It's the Swedish automaker's newest dedicated EV model. It's the new entry point for the brand and, with a surprisingly affordable price tag, Volvo expects it will eventually be one of its bestsellers. The EX30 is also the brand's smallest SUV and its quickest vehicle yet, with a claimed 0-60 time of just 3.4 seconds. It's kind of a big deal.
The EX30 is a little guy -- Volvo's smallest SUV. At 166.7 inches from bumper to bumper, it's a little more than 8 inches shorter than the already compact XC40 and C40 SUVs. However, unlike the 40 Series, this new model was designed from the ground up as an EV, built on an electrified platform, which enabled Volvo's designers to stretch the wheelbase to 104.3 inches -- only 2 inches short of its larger sibling -- which should help it retain pretty good interior volume for its class.
New EX30 Is Volvo's Smallest, Quickest Electric SUV
The minimalist Scandinavian design features Volvo's hallmark Thor's hammer headlamps, which frame the SUV's grilleless fascia. C-shaped LED tail lights punctuate the rear end, while the passengers inside are treated to an interior that balances a fairly spartan design with an interesting variety of materials and textures. Overhead, a massive glass roof lets in light, visually expanding the compact cabin.
A single large display graces the EX30's dashboard featuring the latest generation of Volvo's infotainment software with Google built-in, wireless Apple CarPlay connectivity and over-the-air update capability. Like the Tesla Model Y, there's no instrument cluster ahead of the EX30's steering wheel -- digital or otherwise -- so speed, range and real-time driving info live in a dedicated area along the top edge of the center screen. Volvo's designers continued to simplify the cabin, opting for a full-width Harman Kardon soundbar at the base of the windshield and consolidating the door locks and window controls on the center console to eliminate speakers and hardware from the doors, and opening up more space for storage.
Ambient lighting, digital phone-as-key and the latest generation of Volvo's driver assistance round out the small SUV's technology suite -- though the EX30 lacks the EX90's lidar hump.
The EX30 will launch with a single-option 69 kilowatt-hour battery pack (of which 64 kWh is usable) in North America. In its base configuration, that battery powers a single 268-horsepower electric motor sending a healthy 253 pound-feet of torque to the rear wheels. Volvo estimates this rear-driven EX30 spec will hustle from 0 to 60 mph in around 5.1 seconds and cruise for 275 EPA-estimated miles between charges. It boasts a decent 153-kilowatt charging capacity, so owners can expect DC fast charges from 10% to 80% in around 27 minutes.
Volvo will also offer the EX30 in an all-wheel drive configuration, which adds a second 154-horsepower electric motor to the front axle. This Twin Motor spec steps up to 422 hp combined and 400 lb-ft of torque, enough grunt to launch to 60 mph in 3.4 seconds. That makes this little pocket rocket Volvo's fastest-accelerating model, which is impressive. However, the dual-motor EX30 pays a weight and efficiency penalty, dropping to a still respectable 265 miles per charge.
Perhaps the most interesting thing about the EX30 is the price. Volvo says its new entry-point EV will start at $36,145, including the $1,195 destination charge, which will make it one of the most affordable electric cars you can buy when it arrives in 2024. US preorders open today, with the promise of more detailed pricing and options info closer to launch. Volvo also teased an upcoming EX30 Cross Country model that will join the lineup post-launch.