With smash hits just like the XC90, XC60 and the child XC40, you’d be forgiven for pondering Volvo had grow to be an SUV model within the final decade or so. However with the new V60, the Swedish model is eager to emphasize it’s nonetheless the grasp of that middle-class household favorite: the luxurious and sensible property automotive.
For a very long time now this a part of the market has been the battleground occupied by the Germans: the Audi A4 Avant, Mercedes C-Class Property and BMW three Sequence Touring. And whereas it might seem Volvo has taken a leaf out of the Germans’ books by making the V60 appear like the bigger V90, look carefully and it’s a unique proposition.
There are the Thor’s Hammer day-running lights, the big grille proudly sporting the Volvo badge, sturdy shoulder traces and vertical tail lamps. However park the 2 Volvo wagons facet by facet and also you’ll see that whereas the V90 is longer and lithe-looking, the V60 is stubbier and arguably higher proportioned.
One key distinction between the 2 is that property automotive rear finish. On the V90 it’s a rakish, almost-shooting-brake tackle the big exec property automotive components, however the V60 is boxier. Volvo says the V60 is the fashionable successor to the V70, 850 and 760 – automobiles that put practicality to the fore.
The previous V60’s curvy however small boot has been changed with one that’s the largest within the class, usually talking. Elevate up the tailgate and there’s 539 litres of area with a very good huge flooring space, no load lip and useful lift-up divider to cease baggage of Waitrose purchasing from flying round. Crucially, the V60 trumps the A4 Avant’s 505-litre boot and the three Sequence Touring’s 495 litres. The rear seats fold down by urgent two buttons and as soon as folded, they lie nearly flat to extend the area to 1,441 litres – not fairly as a lot because the BMW or the Mercedes, however shut sufficient.
The Volvo is longer than the BMW and Audi too, which implies there’s loads of passenger area; two six-footers ought to simply having the ability to sit behind one another with area to spare. Room within the footwells is compromised, although, if the entrance seats are of their lowest setting, and carrying a 3rd passenger is a tad tight because of the transmission tunnel. These complaints may be levied on the Germans too.
Up entrance there’s the now-familiar Volvo fare, with beautiful detailing and a relaxed really feel. As on the brand new wave of Volvo SUVs and the S90 and V90 sisters, the dashboard is generally digital; all variations get a display that replaces conventional instrument clocks and gauges, plus a 9.7-inch portrait touchscreen. Whereas it’s not as intuitive as a system managed by a rotary knob, with its shiny display and new quicker working system (than some other Volvo) the infotainment is straightforward to make use of.
There are fewer splashes of actual wooden or metallic trim than within the V90, as a result of the V60 favours soft-touch plastics. It’s a solidly constructed and comfy place to take a seat. It’s only a disgrace, then, that the facet is let down a bit by the plastic used on the centre console; it appears to be like and feels a bit too low-cost for our liking.
On the street the V60 is snug. Our automotive was the D4 with its 187bhp 2.Zero-litre four-cylinder diesel and the engine is at its quietest within the new property – most likely due to some higher inside packaging. It’s a robust performer – Zero-62mph takes 7.9 seconds – and fairly frugal; Volvo claims 61.4mpg, which is on par with an A4 Avant, and we noticed 53mpg in our real-world check. Till we strive the 245bhp T5 and plug-in hybrid editions, the D4 would appear to be the decide of the line-up, providing a greater mix of energy and financial system than the 148bhp D3 model.
The two.Zero-litre diesel comes with a six-speed guide gearbox however we had the eight-speed computerized transmission and it’s good for essentially the most half, though some modifications are a bit cumbersome and there are not any paddle-shifters behind the wheel.
Nonetheless, including paddle-shifters would give the V60 a sporty contact that it simply doesn’t want, as a result of this isn’t a automotive that even claims to be sporty. Whereas a three Sequence Touring is a communicative, thrilling sort of property, the V60 is the polar reverse, and that’s extraordinarily welcome. There’s supple suspension and whereas the steering does weight up properly as soon as above 40mph, it’s mild and devoid of really feel at low speeds. On this case that’s simply wonderful; the V60 is pleasingly completely different and completely attuned to the abnormal, every day duties this automotive must carry out.
The one actual fly within the ointment is the specification. At launch there are simply two trim ranges, Momentum and Inscription, (a sportier R-Design and jacked-up Cross Nation will observe), every out there with a higher-grade Professional model. And whereas they’re properly geared up (customary spec consists of sat-nav, LED headlights and the portrait touschscreen), Volvo has cottoned on to the Germans, a lot of the fascinating gear, comparable to Apple CarPlay and Volvo’s semi-autonomous driving aids, are optionally available. Take care on the configurator, as a result of the worth can inflate fairly significantly.