Volvo allowed a few journalists to take a look at their latest model, the EX30, which is set to compete with more aggressively priced brands. We had the opportunity to explore the interior, examine the exterior details, but unfortunately, the first test drives will have to wait until the end of the year.
Sleek Design and Finishing
The EX30, don’t be mistaken, may have a smaller size on paper, but it is undoubtedly a true SUV. While it is more compact than its Volvo counterparts, it fully maintains its SUV status. Its generous dimensions and considerable height echo its off-road lineage, highlighting its rightful place in this vehicle category.
Despite its size, which may suggest otherwise, the EX30 perfectly fulfills its role as an SUV, showcasing its design to tackle all kinds of terrains with confidence and competence… including the highly “extreme” challenges of speed bumps and urban potholes.
In person, the EX30 is much more attractive than the initial renderings suggested. Its silhouette borrows stylistic elements from the EX90 while incorporating traits from the XC40 and C40 models. The result is a successful blend of styles with a minimalist Scandinavian aesthetic.
Details such as the bodywork, logo integration, and shapes are finely crafted, proving that Volvo does not compromise on quality, even for a more affordable vehicle.
However, some cost-cutting measures are noticeable. The handles are larger than one would expect, they are not flush-mounted, rear air conditioning is not available, and certain structural elements of the chassis are visible.
Nevertheless, the overall finish is meticulous with a sober and clean interior. The interior space is intelligently organized, with well-thought-out storage compartments, a sliding central armrest, wireless charging slots, and even a space for a bag between the front seats.
Without going into detail, you will enjoy customizing your EX30 through the Volvo configurator. You will have a wide range of materials for the interior trim, ranging from fabric to blended wool for the seats. The dashboard and doors are not left behind, with various inlay options.
Volvo has made an effort to incorporate environmentally friendly materials, such as recycled denim and woven flax fiber. There is no option to choose leather, whether it be animal or vegetable-based. For those who prefer a more modern touch, starry inserts made from synthetic materials are also available. It’s the finishing option I preferred.
Tesla-Style Control Screen
The influence of the Tesla Model 3 is evident in the EX30’s dashboard, dominated by a large portrait-format screen without physical buttons. The interface features a panel reminiscent of classic functions and undeniably recalls the style of the American brand.
I would have really appreciated the presence of a heads-up display. It is a valuable tool to enhance the driving experience, allowing drivers to keep their eyes on the road while having access to key vehicle information. This is a feature that is missing on the EX30, especially since there is no screen behind the steering wheel that could serve as an instrument cluster.
Volvo has developed a custom interface for Android Automotive (which runs on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon chip), distinct from what is found in the XC40 and EX90 models. It offers an appealing aesthetic, ease of use, and intuition that surpasses previous versions.
For now, this interface is only visible in demo mode, but the essential features are already integrated. It proves to be less harsh and more refined than what we have seen in the XC40 and C40, resembling the familiar Android smartphone experience that many users are accustomed to.
The interface plays a crucial role in the overall vehicle usage experience, so it is encouraging to see that Volvo has taken significant steps to improve it on the EX30 without adopting the one from the EX90.
The interior of the EX30 is clean and well-integrated. The materials, including recycled components, are of high quality, and the Harman Kardon sound system is subtly concealed behind fabric. The trunk is much more spacious and well-designed than previously reported, with additional storage space below, while the front trunk, or “frunk,” is sufficient to store a charging cable.
Relative Comfort for Rear Passengers
The rear seats of the EX30 seem promising in terms of comfort. They provide generous space that should suit most passengers. The seats are sufficiently cushioned, although some parts are firmer.
However, their ability to offer optimal comfort may vary depending on the size of the occupants. For those who are particularly tall, the space may feel somewhat restricted. For example, a passenger over 6’3″ (1.9 meters) may find long trips less comfortable. Despite this, for the majority of passengers, the EX30 appears to offer a pleasant and welcoming rear environment for both short and long journeys.
Concerns Remain Regarding Range and Options
The range of the Single version with its LFP battery is a concern, as well as the vehicle’s behavior on the road in various situations. Depending on the chosen trim levels, additional driving aids may be available, improving comfort without compromising safety. The Ultra version even offers a 360-degree view, a feature typically reserved for high-end vehicles.
The EX30 from Volvo immediately charms with its elegant and minimalist design. Every line, every curve is carefully thought out and executed with meticulous precision, creating a clean aesthetic that captures attention. Its attention to detail is evident in even the smallest elements, such as the interior door handles.
Inside, the materials used in the cabin, whether natural or recycled, embody the manufacturer’s commitment to quality. Together, these elements form a vehicle that is not only functional but also remarkably well-designed. The EX30 proves that quality does not have to be sacrificed in the name of functionality; on the contrary, it demonstrates how these two aspects can complement each other and create a fulfilling experience.
Lastly, let us present an image of the EX30 Cross Country edition. With its rugged and adventurous appearance, it fits perfectly alongside an Ami Buggy. This version will be marketed with a range of additional accessories; however, due to its off-road-oriented design, it may have slightly lower aerodynamics compared to other models. It’s a compromise, perhaps, but a small price to pay for those who are ready to venture off the beaten path.