Volvo S40 2.0 Powershift Malaysia

Volvo has updated the specifications for the Volvo S40 here in Malaysia. The 2.4 litre engine has been replaced by a 2.0 litre unit which is essentially the Duratec unit found in the Ford Focus and the Mazda 3 here in Malaysia. It makes 145 PS at 6,000rpm and 185Nm of torque at 4,500rpm.

But what’s most interesting is the fact that the engine is now mated to a Ford Powershift transmission, which is basically a 6-speed twin clutch transmission. This makes it the first locally assembled (CKD) twin clutch car in the country. Powershift is a development of Getrag Ford Transmissions GmbH, a 50:50 Ford and Getrag JV.

Like VW’s DSG, there are two versions of the Powershift transmission out there – one with wet clutches and another with dry clutches. The unit installed in the S40 is the wet clutch version. Generally dry clutch versions like Volkswagen’s 7-speed DSG (the 6-speed used a wet clutch) are more efficient and lighter because an oil bath is not necessary, Ford/Volvo says wet versions have reduced wear and tear and thus last longer. Ford will use its dry clutch version on smaller cars like the Fiesta.

Ford Powershift

A twin-clutch transmission basically means the gearbox works like a manual transmission but it has two clutches, one for the odd gears and one for the even gears. While the odd clutch is in 3rd gear and is currently the active gear selected, the even clutch pre-selects 4th gear, so that when the time comes to shift, the switchover is much faster and smoother – an almost continuous flow of power.

0 to 100km/h with manual transmission takes about 9.5 seconds in a 2.0 litre Volvo S40 which is really quite far from blazing. The Powershift model is rated at 9.8 seconds, just fractions of a second slower than a true blue manual. As for fuel consumption, the car is rated for 11.3 litre per 100km in the city, 6.4 litres per 100km on the highway, and 8.1 litres per 100km on combined usage.

Other than the engine change, this new S40 specification also adds dual xenon headlamps and the Blind-Spot Info System that notifies the driver (with a blinking light) of objects in the car’s blindspot zone, which personally I feel is a little too sensitive.

The new Volvo S40 2.0 Powershift retails for RM169,950.00 OTR without insurance, which just happens to be the exact same figure as the 2.4 litre model. But what you’re paying for the Powershift is actually just slightly more than the 2.4 by a couple of hundreds of ringgit. This is because the OTR without insurance price includes road tax, and the 2.0 model naturally has cheaper road tax at RM379.50 as opposed to the 2.4 litre model’s RM815.