The recent redesign of Volvo’s large XC90 sport utility vehicle catapulted the Swedish brand to the forefront of the luxury market, as its longstanding bestseller – the smaller XC60 crossover – humbly underpinned the automaker.
Now, after nine years on the market and more than 1 million in global sales, the XC60 will get its day in the sun when the crossover's next generation hits showrooms in August.
The XC60, the bestselling premium mid-sized SUV in Europe, is the first of Volvo’s 60 series cars to get a wholesale upgrade in a bid to boost the automaker’s profile in the U.S., where the smaller crossover plays No. 2 to the XC90.
Starting at $42,495, the XC60 is the least expensive of Volvo’s redesigned models, and according to Volvo executives, intended for young families and empty nesters. The smaller crossover, which composes one-third of Volvo’s global sales, is also the most dynamic on the road. The next-generation, all-wheel-drive XC60 occupies a smaller footprint – it’s 4.7 inches shorter and 280 pounds lighter than the outgoing model – and flaunts a sculpted, more athletic body. The T5 base model gets a 250-horsepower turbocharged engine, while the T6 runs on a 316-horsepower turbo- and supercharged engine. The T8 plug-in electric hybrid delivers 400 horsepower using a 10.4-kilowatt battery and a pair of electric motors.
However, the crossover’s interior impresses more than its handling, sporting a plush cabin centered on a 9-inch touchscreen that works even with a gloved touch (especially useful for long Swedish winters). Buyers can upgrade to Nappa leather upholstery and open-pore driftwood inlays, a 12.3-inch display screen with navigation, and a 15-speaker Bowers & Wilkins sound system.
Volvo’s commitment to its public goal to eliminate deaths and serious injuries in a new Volvo by 2020 means that the new XC60 has the most advanced package of standard safety features in the brand’s lineup. In particular, the new crossover introduces steering assistance, which supports the vehicle’s newest and most advanced safety capabilities by working to steer the XC60 away from collisions with vehicles, bicyclists, pedestrians, and large animals. The XC60’s oncoming lane mitigation system uses steering assist to prevent accidents with oncoming vehicles if the car crosses the lane divider at speeds between 37 and 87 m.p.h. The optional Blind Spot Indication system uses steer assist to return the XC60 to its lane if it detects a potential collision when the vehicle changes lanes.