South Africa

WATCH: Anticipation over as Volvo EX30 lands on local soil

Having lift the lid on specification details of the local market EX30 a week ago, Volvo Car South Africa unveiled its smallest and most affordable electric vehicle at a gala event on the outskirts of the Johannesburg Central Business District (CBD) on Thursday.

Watch the EX30 walkaround below

Its first wholly dedicated EV based on fellow Geely affiliate brand Zeekr’s Sustainable Experience Architecture (SEA) platform, and not the Scalable Production Architecture 2 (SPA2) that underpins the EX90 as erroneously reported until now, the EX30 takes-up station above the XC40, without replacing any derivatives or indeed the electric P6 and P8 versions of the model soon to be renamed EX40.

ALSO READ: ‘Unboxed’ heading for South Africa new Volvo EX30 officially out

Unveiled last year, with pre-orders by September said to have been in excess of 150 units, the fourth fully electric Volvo in South Africa after the pair of XC40s, as well as the C40 Recharge, will have a line-up spanning five models and two powerunits, all priced below R1-million and with a range under 500 km.

In the metal

Said to be the most sustainable Volvo ever made as per the brand becoming fully electric by 2030, the EX30’s body structure is made largely out of recycled aluminium and steel in move the Chinese-owned Swedish brand says has reduced it carbon footprint by 30 tonnes over an eventual 200 000 km distance.

Volvo reveals new EX30 in South Africa
Coupe-inspired styling has visual inspiration from the P1800 ES.

The same applies to the interior where apart from omitting leather entirely, the majority of the materials and veneers on the doors and dashboard are made from 75% recycled polyester, denim and wool, the carpets from plastic bottles and the seat upholstery also in part from recycled bottles.

It all happens inside

Volvo EX30 arrives in South Africa
Interior has been designed around the minimalist principle with most of the functions now integrated into the new infotainment system.

Riding on alloy wheels from 19 to 20-inches in three designs, the EX30’s interior conforms to the minimalist design method as all of the various functions now reside within the new 12.3-inch infotainment system.

A standard fixture across all five models, the system incorporates not only wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, but also 5G, over-the-air updates and Google’s latest Android operating system.

South African-spec Volvo EX30 officially revealed
Selection of materials are all made from 75% recycled polyester.

Worth noting is that an instrument binnacle is no longer offered, its place taken by a thin sensor panel that scans the interior, as well as the driver’s facial signs as part of the Driver Attention Alert system.

Besides the electric window switches now moving to the floating centre console, plus touch-sensitive buttons on the steering wheel, the EX30 also loses the gear lever that now moves to the steering column.

Volvo EX30 arrives in South Africa
Centre console houses a pop-out cupholder tray, the switches for the electric windows and at the bottom, another storage area as well as the wireless smartphone charger pad.

In its place, the console, which Volvo describes as “extremely versatile” houses a pop-out pair of cupholders in a tray below the upper armrest, and at its base, a wireless smartphone charger plus a storage area that increases in depth by a recess hidden by a split opening.

It doesn’t stop there as rear passengers have added access to a removable tray positioned at the base of the console, as well as the electric window switches which, like those of the front, no longer reside on the door cards.

South African-spec Volvo EX30 officially revealed
Lack of speaker hardware means the storage bins are wider and deep.

Taking centre stage though, all but the base model are equipped with the unique Harman Kardon sound system that utilises a soundbar running the entire width of the dashboard below the windscreen.

Effectively nullifying the need for any speakers, as evident by the size of the door bins, the system delivers 1 000-watts and is further complimented by a mood lighting system with five themes.

Volvo EX30 arrives in South Africa
Harman Kardon developed sound bar resides on top of the dashboard and also replaces all of the various speakers.

Measuring 4 233 mm long, 1 837 mm wide, 1 555 mm tall and riding on a wheelbase of 2 650 mm, opening the EX30s’ tailgate opens to reveal a storage hold of 318-litres, or as much as 902-litres with the rear seats folded down.

All-electric

As already known, the line-up comprises three trim levels, starting with the Core that produces 200kW/343Nm from its 51-kWh lithium-ion phosphate battery pack.

The claimed range is 344 km with 0-100 km/h taking 5.7 seconds. As with all Volvos, top speed is limited to 180 km/h.

Volvo reveals new EX30 in South Africa
Alloy wheel sizes range from 18-inch to 20-inches in three designs.

Sporting the same power outputs, the step-up mid-range Plus and flagship Ultra are, however, both motivated by a 69-kWh battery pack that allows for a range of 476 km and 0-100 km/h in 5.3 seconds.

At the range’s summit, the Twin Motor Performance variant of the mentioned pair adds a secondary electric motor to the rear axle, which sees power increase to 315 kW and torque to 543 Nm.

Volvo reveals new EX30 in South Africa
Boot space varies from 318-litres to 902-litres with the split rear seat folded down.

The four-wheel-drive configuration means added weight though and as a result, range decreases to 460 km while 0-100 km/h comes up in a significantly quicker 3.6 seconds.

Claimed charging time using a DC fast charger requires a waiting time of 30 minutes from 10-80%.

As standard, both the Core and Plus are fitted with an 11 kW on-board charger and the Ultra with the uprated 22 kW outlet.

Spec and tech

South African-spec Volvo EX30 officially revealed
Seats can be had with a denim fabric option made out of recycled polyester.

On the mentioned spec front, the Core boasts 18-inch alloy wheels, a heated steering wheel, Adaptive Cruise Control and rear parking sensors, while the Plus recieves the smartphone charger and Harman Kardon audio, ambient lighting, 19-inch alloy wheels, front and rear parking sensors, and an electric tailgate.

Volvo EX30 arrives in South Africa
Newly developed 12.3-inch infotainment system sports the latest Google Android operating system and comes standard across all models.

Reserved for the Ultra is the Park Pilot system, heated and electric front seats, a 360-degree surround-view camera system and a fixed panoramic sunroof.

Colours and price

Set to go on-sale in the second quarter of the year, the EX30 will be offered in five colours; Crystal White, Onyx Black, Vapour Grey, Cloud Blue and Moss Yellow, with all models’ sticker prices including a five-year/100 000 km maintenance plan plus an eight-year/160 000 km battery warranty.

  • EX30 Core – R775 900
  • EX30 Plus – R865 900
  • EX30 Plus Twin Motor Performance – R935 900
  • EX30 Ultra – R965 900
  • EX30 Ultra Twin Motor Performance – R995 900

NOW READ: First shipment of Volvo EX30s soon on South African shores