Monday, 12 March 2012

Swedish House Effciency, the New Volvo V50

Buyers wanting to go green with a new Volvo V50 have two choices of the Swedish firm’s DRIVe model: one with the eco-friendly 1.6-litre turbodiesel engine and the other with the same engine but equipped with stop-start technology. Both models have the same 108bhp 1.6-litre turbodiesel engine, which comes with 177lb ft of shove from just 1750rpm, and this engine has a revised electronic brain to improve efficiency. The low down punch makes the V50 very relaxing to drive as the power comes in gently but surely, while the five-speed manual gearbox has an accurate and light shift action. Acceleration is adequate rather than brisk, taking 11.5 seconds to get from 0-62mph, while top speed is 118mph. More importantly, the V50 DRIVe models both cruise comfortably on the motorway without resorting to lower gears when it comes to climbing steeper inclines. With the Start/Stop version, the engine switches off when the car is at a standstill and the driver selects neutral and takes his or her foot off the clutch pedal. This saves fuel and lowers carbon dioxide emissions without affecting the driving experience, while a gear shift indicator on the dash encourages the driver to select the best gear for economy.

The standard DRIVe version turns in 62.8mpg combined economy and 119g/km of carbon dioxide emissions to qualify for low-rate road tax. The Stop/Start model goes further with 72.4mpg economy and 104g/km CO2 emissions. Depending on which trim you opt for, the V50 DRIVe models attract between group 8 to 10 insurance ratings, while all models are covered by a three-year, 60,000 mile warranty. Every model comes with climate control, four electric windows, CD stereo and alloy wheels.

Whilst Volvo came out on top as the best used car to buy in this previous article, it seems they could be looking at dominating the new Eco car market too. Has anyone taken the plunge with the new Volco v50? What are your thoughts?


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