There are a lot of signature elements that tell you that this one is a part of the Volvo family. These include the Thor shaped headlamps and 21 vertical slat grille. Yet the way it’s been designed it looks distinct when compared to say the XC 90. The profile sees a generous use of chrome that makes the car look premium. The L-shaped LED tail lamps that go all the way to the roof, the roof spoiler and dual tail pipes also are an attractive proposition on the car. The dimensions are bigger than before and that only helps the cause in a SUV loving market like India.
There’s a lot to look forward to when it comes to the cabin of the new XC 60. The interiors are premium and use of nappa leather is bound to attract a lot of buyers in India. The 9 inch portrait shaped touch screen is very easy to use as it is very responsive. Almost every function can be controlled using the screen that works with Apple car play and Android auto. The front seats are ventilated for heating/cooling, massage and electrically adjusted seat extenders. Another highlight is the very impressive 15 speaker Bowers & Wilkins sound system that is a pleasure to listen. The huge panoramic sunroof gives this one an edge as it’s a desirable feature in India. Interiors are one area where Volvo has been making rapid strides and the XC60 probably has the best cabin when compared to the cars it competes against. The car is now longer and the second row gets more space in addition to AC vents on the B-pillar. But because of the big tunnel the middle passenger might face some discomfort. The boot space at 635 liters is pretty generous as well and surprisingly houses an 18 inch spare wheel while the SUV otherwise gets 19 inch wheels.
Amongst other things the car also gets blind spot Information system for safe overtaking, park assist, oncoming lane mitigation, Cross traffic alert and driver alert.
The XC 60 runs on the tried and tested 2.0 liter 4 cylinder Diesel engine that powers a lot of other cars from the brand. It churns out 235 Hp and 480 Nm torque. A cool innovation from Volvo is the Power Pulse that negates a lot of turbo lag which is otherwise associated with Diesel engines. A liner power delivery is what the engine offers making the drive jerk free. The 8-speed automatic transmission works well with the mill and yes there are paddle shifts as well for you to have that some more fun. And yes a wheel drive system is there too. NVH levels are also very impressive as despite being a Diesel the cabin is very silent.
Ride & Handling
The XC60 comes with variable air suspension which controls all 4 corners of the car and decides the ride height depending on the surface conditions. Apart from a comfortable ride this also results in a maximum ground clearance of 223mm which is bound to do the XC 60 a lot of good. The SUV also surprises you when it comes to body roll which is kept to a minimum despite the SUV dimensions. There are 5 driving modes on offer Eco, Comfort, Dynamic, Off-Road & Individual and with each mode engine, suspension and steering settings change.
Volvo is known for some path breaking safety innovations and they just keep on increasing with every new car. Amongst other things the car also gets blind spot Information system for safe overtaking, park assist, oncoming lane mitigation, Cross traffic alert and driver alert. The head up display apart from showing you the speed also shows the speed limit at that stretch of road. And finally the lane keeping aid is a masterpiece as well where if the car drifts out of its lane it automatically steers back into its lane. This makes the XC60 one of the safest cars the world over and its users in India are sure to benefit with the entire tech on offer. Cars from the brand are a nice alternative to the Germans dominating the Indian luxury car market and the XC 60 is no different. In fact the rivals should be a worried lot right now.
Shams Naqvi is an anchor/producer for the News X motor show Living Cars