Following on the heels of last year’s Volvo S60 R SEMA dream cars, Evolve has once again created a show car, this time in the shape of the exciting new S40 sport sedan. Sold to Evolve Cars, Inc. for $1, the Volvo S40 is strictly a VCNA Marketing exercise designed to build interest among the aftermarket enthusiast segment.
Painted an eye-catching Silver metallic and Titanium Gray metallic paint scheme, the Evolve S40 is a full force frontal assault on the tuner enthusiast market. An estimated 425 horsepower propels all four wheels through a close ratio 6-speed manual transmission via Volvo’s Haldex electronically controlled all-wheel-drive system.
From 30 feet away it’s clear that the Evolve S40, while based on a production version of the popular Volvo S40 sport sedan, is no normal Volvo. S40’s design cues are taken to the extreme with the Evolve S40. What’s most noticeable is the aggressively styled custom-built body and trim pieces. Up front is the Evolve designed front bumper with an ultra-deep front spoiler that houses Evolve Cars’ signature mesh grille inlays. Functional twin air inlet scoops molded into the front fenders direct cool air over the turbocharger and into the engine compartment for improved performance and better engine cooling.
Lower side sills, rear valance, trunk spoiler and taillight trim add to the Evolve S40’s aggressive appearance. The fuel door has been saved and the filler is relocated out of sight. Perhaps what lends most to the Evolve S40’s stance is the high-performance wheel and tire package. The Evolve S40 rides on staggered shoes. The lightweight HRE C21alloy wheels are 8.5-inches wide in front and a full 11.0-inches wide at the rear. Diameters front and rear are 19.0 inches. The wheels are wrapped in low profile Pirelli PZero Rosso tires that are 255/30ZR-19 up front and 305/25ZR-19 around back.
Other exterior modifications include a custom made 3.5-inch dual exhaust system, darkened tail lamps and a body color moon roof.
The two small openings on the Evolve S40’s fenders belie its performance potential. Used to direct air in and around the engine compartment, they are needed to keep things cool beneath the car’s sculpted hood. And they are truly needed. Residing front and center in the engine bay is a massive intercooled turbocharger. Thick veins of plumbing run across the inline 5-cylinder engine and a strut tower brace helps stabilize the chassis of the Evolve S40 for up to 550 horsepower.
Braking Evolve S40 is a high-performance braking system. Up front are monstrous 380mm two-piece rotors with eight-piston liquid cooled AP Racing calipers. At the rear are 362mm two-piece rotors with six-piston AP Racing calipers. Gracing the massive rotors is a special slotting pattern to maximize braking performance. Keeping all of this under supreme control is Volvo’s anti-lock braking system with electronic brake force distribution.
When Evolve decided how much tire contact patch they needed to handle the power and deliver the cornering and braking performance desired, it quickly became clear that an extraordinary suspension was needed. To accommodate, Evolve’s Chief Engineer, Mano Agulian, created a Formula One style pushrod rear suspension, bringing the strut/spring assembly inboard into the vehicle’s trunk and created new wheel wells around the aggressive tires. Up front, a custom Evolve adjustable coil-over suspension provides precision handling and a nearly flat cornering stance. Large Evolve anti-roll bars and fully adjustable Koni struts and Eibach springs give the driver ultimate control and adjustability for any road surface. Volvo’s Dynamic Stability Traction Control (DSTC) system is also on hand to help keep the car under control during extreme maneuvers.
Long praised by the automotive media for its ergonomically superior interiors, the S40 keeps the tradition alive, with a twist. While still providing the utmost in functionality, the 2005 Volvo S40 introduced an automotive first: the ultra slim center stack. Covered in stylish genuine aluminum trim, the swooping curve combines Scandinavian design influence with a touch of high-end electronics. Behind the slim panel, more interior storage space is available with the addition of a small tray that’s perfect for a cell phone or other items.
The Evolve S40 adds unique interior appointments including silver carbon fiber leather and gray leather seating surfaces atop the supremely comfortable Volvo seats. A silver suede headliner and other silver and graphite colored pieces highlight the interior along with performance aluminum pedals, custom speaker and grilles and an Evolve shift knob. An Alpine audio system is also included.
2521 cc / 153.8 in³
83.3 mm / 3.28 in
90.2 mm / 3.55 in
316.9 kw / 425 bhp
168.58 bhp per litre
287.75 bhp per tonne
Disc w/Liquid Cooled AP Racing 8-Piston Calipers
f brake size
x 380 mm / x 15.0 in
Disc w/AP Racing 6-Piston Calipers
r brake size
x 362 mm / x 14.3 in
F 48.3 x 21.6 cm / 19.0 x 8.5 in
R 48.3 x 27.9 cm / 19 x 11 in
Rack & Pinion w/Power Assist
Evolve Adjustable MacPherson Struts w/Coil over Springs, Stabilizer Bar
Evolve Multi-Link w/Pushrod Inboard Spring Strut Assembly