2018 Volvo XC60: Graceful and eco-friendly

By THOMAS HUONG | 21 June 2018


IT is very easy to be impressed by the second-generation Volvo XC60 which is another classy, refined and generously packaged machine that is helping Volvo Cars to conquer the luxury class.

The new XC60 plug-in hybrid is the latest Volvo model to arrive in Malaysia with the 2.0-litre super and turbocharged Drive-E petrol engine, beautifully appointed and serene cabins, and fully-loaded with advanced safety technology and various creature comforts.

In recent years, the Swedish premium automaker has unleashed impressive new models like the XC90 SUV and S90 executive saloon, with powerful and fuel-efficient plug-in hybrid powertrains.

Volvo XC60 PHEV


The XC60 premium compact SUV (sport utility vehicle) was launched in January in Malaysia and offered in three locally assembled 2.0-litre variants.

With 0% GST, they are priced at RM282,011 (turbocharged T5); RM315,029.86 (T8 Twin Engine Inscription) and RM324,463.83 (T8 Twin Engine Inscription Plus).

For the extra RM9,400 - the Inscription Plus trim level gets Premium Sound by Bowers & Wilkins; a 15-speaker sound system that supplies 1,100 watts through a 10-channel Class-D amplifier.

This is a great value-for-money deal, which would surely be appreciated by those who are familiar with the cost and hassle of properly installing a high-end in-car audio system.

2018 Volvo XC60 (9)
Exterior

The XC60 is an exquisite vehicle to look at, with an understated athletic stance, as well as clean, elegant lines.

The exterior has an elegant Scandinavian design that seems timeless, with a sculpted hood that conveys strength, and emphasised by large 19-inch rims, and LED headlights with the signature T-shaped Thor’s Hammer daytime running lights.

Our test drive loaner also comes with a RM8,288 (excludes charges for painting and labour) exterior styling package that includes front and rear skid plates with Double End connection pipes, and Bright Silver door mirror covers.

2018 Volvo XC60 (82)
Interior

Everything in the classy leather-clad cabin feels thoughtfully designed and detailed, and refined.

Like other new-generation Volvo cars nowadays, the XC60’s dashboard has a minimalist look without lots of buttons and switches cluttering the view.

Another familiar feature is the Sensus Connect infotainment system, with both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, that is accessible via a nine-inch touchscreen in the centre of the dashboard.

Via the Sensus touchscreen, you can turn on or off functions like BLIS (Blind Spot Information System), Lane Keeping Aid or Park Assist.

2018 Volvo XC60 (6)


A chrome metal strip runs across the dashboard to accentuate the premium look, which is also emphasised by the comfortable black leather upholstery.

Both the powered front seats have electric lumbar support, and we also enjoyed the huge powered panoramic sunroof which allows for more light in the cabin, as well as the exquisite sound quality of the 15-speaker Premium Sound by Bowers & Wilkins.

This high-end audio system includes three sound settings - Gothenburg Concert Hall (recreates the live concert hall experience); Individual stage (allows customisation for sound intensity and envelopment); and Studio (sound optimised for rear seats, driver or all seats).

2018 Volvo XC60 (24)
Practicality

The XC60 has a roomy cabin, with rear air-conditioning vents and good headroom for 1.7-metre rear occupants.

The centre storage compartment (between the front seats) offers decent storage and two USB slots to power your mobile devices.

The interior has a tasteful yet practical design, with touches like a sliding chromed lid for cupholders in the centre console.

2018 Volvo XC60 (28)


All four doors have large bins to hold small items, and there are front seat-back nets to store magazines or water bottles.

Rear seats can be folded flat for more cargo room, and this is important as the 505-litre rear luggage capacity of the XC60, while very respectable, is not as roomy as its German rivals which typically have 550-litre rear luggage capacities.

Safety

• Electronic Stability Control (ESC)
• Hill Start Assist
• Hill Descent Control
• City Safety (collision avoidance + mitigation with intersection support)
• Pedestrian, cyclist and large animal detection
• Rear Collision Warning & Mitigation Support
• Driver Alert Control (DAC)
• Lane Keeping Aid (LKA)
• Run-Off Road Mitigation with Road Edge Detection
• Oncoming Lane Mitigation
• Blind Spot Information System (BLIS) with Steer Assist
• Cross Traffic Alert (CTA)
- Dual Stage Driver & Front Passenger Airbags
• Side Impact Protection System (SIPS) with Dual Chamber SIPS Airbags, Front Row Seats
• Full-Length Inflatable Curtains (IC)
• ISOFIX Attachment Points, Rear Outer Seats
• Indirect tyre pressure monitoring system (iTPMS)
• LED Illumination Headlights
• Automatic Headlight Levelling System
• Active Bending Lights (ABL)
• Reverse camera
• Headlight cleaners
• Tyre sealant kit

2018 Volvo XC60 (3)
Equipment

• All-wheel drive (AWD)
• Electric parking brake with Auto Hold
• Regenerative Braking
• Diamond-cut engine start-stop knob
• Drive Mode Selector
• Voice Control
• Leather upholstery
• Powered front seats
• Mechanical release/fold for rear seats
• Keyless Entry & Drive
• Rain Sensor with Tunnel Detection
• Two-zone Electronic Climate Control (ECC)
• Clean Zone Interior Air Quality System
• Rear air-conditioning vents
• Sensus Connect with 9-inch colour touchscreen
• Audio system (10 speakers, 8 channel, 224W)
• Bluetooth, USB and iPod connectors
• Apple Carplay and Android Auto
• Powered tailgate with hands-free operation
• Gear shift paddles
• Head-Up Display (HUD)
• Navigation Pro with Road Sign Information (RSI)
• Orrefors Crystal Gear Lever with Illumination
• Voice Control with Active Noise Cancellation
• Dual integrated tailpipes
• Inscription Driftwood decor inlay
• Mechanical cushion extension for front seats
• Powered release/fold for outer rear seats - one-touch fold
• Adaptive Cruise Control
• Pilot Assist – Semi-Autonomous Drive
• 360-degree Surround View Camera
• Park Assist Pilot, Parallel & Perpendicular Parking
• Parking Climate with Cabin Pre-Conditioning
• Panoramic Sunroof
• Net Pocket on Tunnel
• Premium Sound by Bowers & Wilkins (15 Speakers, 10 Channel; 1,100W)
• All-wheel drive (AWD)
• Electric parking brake with Auto Hold
• Regenerative Braking
• Diamond-cut engine start-stop knob
• Drive Mode Selector
• Voice Control
• Leather upholstery
• Powered front seats
• Mechanical release/fold for rear seats
• Keyless Entry & Drive
• Rain Sensor with Tunnel Detection
• Two-zone Electronic Climate Control (ECC)
• Clean Zone Interior Air Quality System
• Rear air-conditioning vents
• Sensus Connect with 9-inch colour touchscreen
• Audio system (10 speakers, 8 channel, 224W)
• Bluetooth, USB and iPod connectors
• Apple Carplay and Android Auto
• Powered tailgate with hands-free operation
• Gear shift paddles
• Head-Up Display (HUD)
• Navigation Pro with Road Sign Information (RSI)
• Orrefors Crystal Gear Lever with Illumination
• Voice Control with Active Noise Cancellation
• Dual integrated tailpipes
• Inscription Driftwood decor inlay
• Mechanical cushion extension for front seats
• Powered release/fold for outer rear seats - one-touch fold
• Adaptive Cruise Control
• Pilot Assist – Semi-Autonomous Drive
• 360-degree Surround View Camera
• Park Assist Pilot, Parallel & Perpendicular Parking
• Parking Climate with Cabin Pre-Conditioning
• Panoramic Sunroof
• Net Pocket on Tunnel
• Premium Sound by Bowers & Wilkins (15 Speakers, 10 Channel; 1,100W)

2018 Volvo XC60 (5)
Performance

Those familiar with the Volvo S90 T8 Twin Engine will find no surprises here, as the XC60 T8 Twin Engine shares the same powertrain and plug-in hybrid technology.

Like the S90 T8 Twin Engine, the 10.4kWh lithium-ion battery can be fully charged in four hours, by plugging into the mains supply.

The XC60 can travel up to 45km in all-electric mode.

With a powerful 2.0-litre turbocharged and supercharged Drive-E 4-cylinder engine, total system output is very pleasing 407hp and 640Nm of torque.

2018 Volvo XC60 (7)


Power is delivered in a linear manner, via a familiar smooth-shifting eight-speed Geartronic automatic gearbox from Aisin Seiki, Japan.

Thanks to this huge amount of muscle, you get very quick acceleration if you stomp on the accelerator pedal (0 - 100kph in 5.3 seconds), despite a kerb weight of 2,148kg.

It also has all-wheel drive (AWD) system, which is reassuring when loss of traction occurs in challenging weather or terrain.

2018 Volvo XC60 (20)
Ride and Handling

Fitted with Michelin Latitude Sport 3 high performance tyres sized 235/55 on big 19-inch rims, and armed with all-wheel drive (AWD), the XC60 T8 handles very well when you want to have some fun in the corners.

Power delivery is smooth and responsive, and there’s not much body roll when we tackled road curves.

You get a solid feeling of control and precision, and overall, the XC60 brakes and handles very smoothly.

Besides the handling grace, there is a high level of ride comfort as the XC60, especially with the air suspension set-up, does a good job of soaking up road ruts and irregularities.

2018 Volvo XC60 (27)


The well-tuned steering is light, responsive and accurate, and this is a car that one looks forward to driving.

Like the Volvo S90 T8 Twin Engine, the XC60 T8 here also has Pilot Assist, Volvo’s advanced semi-autonomous driver assistance system, which takes care of steering, acceleration and braking on well-marked roads up to 130kph.

We have tested this function before, and it is an impressive experience - set the cruise control speed to 90kph (as an example) and just let the car slow, brake (based on the speed and actions of the vehicle in front) and accelerate itself; your right foot gets a lot of rest.

2018 Volvo XC60 (33)
Fuel Consumption

We charged the XC60 each night; so we left the house the next day with a full charge, as well as whenever we arrived home and didn’t plan on using the car for the next few hours.

With us, the XC60 was kept in Pure (electric motor only) whenever possible and Hybrid (petrol engine and electric motor) drive modes most of the time as we were curious about the SUV’s real-world fuel sipping qualities.

Volvo Cars claims the XC60, which has a 50-litre petrol tank, can achieve fuel economy (combined cycle) of 2.1 litres per 100km.

In reality, we obtained a very respectable 6.8 litres per 100km, based on the car’s trip computer, after driving 581km, with a remaining travel range of 140km.

2018 Volvo XC60 (2)
Reliability

• 5-year or 120,000km (whichever is first) warranty

Price

• RM324,463.83 OTR without insurance and 0% GST. Locally assembled unit comes without air suspension

2018 Volvo XC60 (73)
Summary

In recent years, Volvo Cars has been disrupting the premium vehicle segment with competitively priced cars loaded to the brim with high-end materials, top safety technologies, smooth powertrains and clean, attractive Scandinavian designs.

The XC60 is another example of this immensely successful marketing strategy - one just needs to look at the specifications and pricing to be tempted.

This is an SUV that is a joy to drive, to be in, and a car that you look forward to spending time with.

2018 Volvo XC60 (81)
Gallery: Volvo XC60 plug-in hybrid
2018 Volvo XC60 (1)
2018 Volvo XC60 (5)
2018 Volvo XC60 (8)
2018 Volvo XC60 (11)
2018 Volvo XC60 (12)
2018 Volvo XC60 (13)
2018 Volvo XC60 (15)
2018 Volvo XC60 (16)
2018 Volvo XC60 (17)
2018 Volvo XC60 (18)
2018 Volvo XC60 (19)
2018 Volvo XC60 (22)
2018 Volvo XC60 (29)
2018 Volvo XC60 (30)
2018 Volvo XC60 (34)
2018 Volvo XC60 (40)
2018 Volvo XC60 (41)
2018 Volvo XC60 (43)
2018 Volvo XC60 (45)
2018 Volvo XC60 (47)
2018 Volvo XC60 (49)
2018 Volvo XC60 (50)
2018 Volvo XC60 (61)
2018 Volvo XC60 (62)
2018 Volvo XC60 (63)
2018 Volvo XC60 (64)
2018 Volvo XC60 (65)
2018 Volvo XC60 (67)
2018 Volvo XC60 (71)
2018 Volvo XC60 (72)
2018 Volvo XC60 (74)
2018 Volvo XC60 (76)
2018 Volvo XC60 (77)
2018 Volvo XC60 (80)

Keywords

Overview

Styling
70%
Performance
80%
Comfort
90%
Value
90%
Safety
90%

CarSifu's Rating: 8.4