For immediate release
Volvo value resides at the heart of the S40 (Sedan) and V40 ("versatility" or Wagon) and Volvo character lives in their soul. True Volvos, the S40 and V40 boast a full complement of safety features, sophisticated chassis design and interior amenities. Now, for 2003 both models receive a host of visual and performance improvements along with several new additions to the optional Premium and Sport Packages.
No matter how a S40 or V40 are outfitted, however, they share the reassuring solidity of Volvo quality build and a satisfying quality feel to the interior. The stylish sedan and versatile wagon continue to build on their first year reputation for offering Volvo virtues at an affordable price. For 2003, the already potent 1.9-liter four-cylinder engine receives a boost in power to 170 bhp at 5,250 rpm, up 10 horsepower from last year. The stout torque rating of 177 ft.-lb. from 1,800 to 4,800 rpm remains unchanged. The standard adaptive 5-speed electronically controlled automatic transmission tailors the S40 or V40's performance characteristics to your personal driving style. Four-wheel independent suspension and the latest generation of anti-lock brakes with Electronic Brake Distribution (EDB) provide superb stopping power. The Dynamic Stability Assistance feature, which monitors and compares the rotational speed of all four wheels and uses the engine management system to reduce torque when it detects a loss of traction, is an available option offered through the Climate Package.
This year, both cars receive an aggressive "egg-crate" style grille, new body-color side moldings and bumpers. Inside, there is a standard in-dash single disc CD player along with a new three-spoke steering wheel and a sporty four-dial instrument cluster.
The optional Premium Package for 2003 adds a leather covered gearshift lever and hand brake handle for both the S40 and V40. The optional Sport Package adds aggressive 16-inch "Galactica" alloy wheels, a new front spoiler and blackout headlight surrounds. The S40 sedan, when ordered with the Sport Package, also receives a new rear trunk-mounted spoiler while the V40 wagon instead adds an attractive new roof-mounted spoiler.
As members of the Volvo family, when it comes to safety, the S40 and V40 have all the good stuff standard including Side Impact Protection System (SIPS) with side airbags and Inflatable Curtain (IC), Whiplash Protection Seating System (WHIPS), front seat belts with pyrotechnic pre-tensioners, "smart" dual-stage front airbags (SRS), Volvo's safety cage construction plus ISO-FIX child safety seat attachments.
Like the luxury S80, the Volvo S40 and V40 come with an Environmental Product Declaration certified by Lloyd's Register of London, UK. The declaration certifies that these models meet environmental standards throughout the life cycle of the car - Volvo's cradle-to-grave approach to environmental management.
S40 and V40 Buyers
There is not much difference between S40 and V40 buyers. Both are well educated with an orientation towards friends and are family-centric. They perceive the V40 as a sedan with a long roof and not as a traditional wagon vehicle. They tend to be entry-level buyers who are young (25-35); pre-family singles or couples with household incomes around $75,000, as well as retired empty nesters.
S40: Audi A4 sedan, Subaru Legacy, VW Jetta and Passat.
V40: Subaru Legacy and Outback, VW Jetta and Passat.
Daniel Johnston or James Hope