Volvo offers new compact SUV, subscription service

After getting cast off by Ford Motor Company in the big auto industry meltdown of 2009-2010, Volvo kind of twisted in the wind a bit, with no new product in the pipeline.

But financial backing from China now has the Swedish company really on a roll, especially with what so many new car buyers are choosing these days: SUVs.

They first came out with a new XC90 in 2016, which replaced the previous XC90 that dated back to 2004.

Next up, the smaller XC60 introduced last year. As was the case with the XC90, this replaced the previous XC60 model, which had been around for quite a while.

And now, Volvo has an entry in the real sweet spot within the sweet spot of the industry. The new XC40, which is a new addition to Volvo's SUV lineup. It's a size that many younger buyers - and even older buyers - are flocking to. Small, but not too small.

It has all the features of its larger showroom mates, like efficient four-cylinder engines, a fairly intuitive touchscreen interface, and of course, an unmistakable Scandinavian style to the design.

Premium, compact SUVs are selling very well right now, so Volvo's timing with the XC40 could be very good. The vehicle has a base price of around $35,000, but upgraded trim levels can send that price closer to $50,000.

But you don't have to buy the XC40, or even lease it. This vehicle helps usher in a new subscription service from Volvo, for less of a commitment and an inclusive pricing package.

"Care by Volvo" gets you an XC40 for a flat $600 monthly payment; there's no haggling and no down payment. For that price you get the vehicle, insurance, maintenance, and even wear and tear items like tires and wiper blades. Basically, the customer is only responsible for fuel.

At the end of the 24-month subscription, you can walk away, with no strings. Or perhaps trade up to another Volvo model, as others are sure to be added to the program. And you can actually switch to a different vehicle after the first 12 months if you like.

So yes, the XC40 is another choice in the crowded premium compact SUV market. With a new choice of how to own it, or not own it, in the first place.
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