2019 Volvo XC60

A versatile SUV designed with comfort and luxury in mind
By Durhl Caussey, Epoch Times Contributor
December 8, 2018 Updated: December 8, 2018

The new 2019 Volvo XC60 is even better than last year’s model, which was named World Car of the Year 2018 at the New York International Auto Show in March. The XC60 beat out cars like the Mazda CX-5 and Range Rover Velar, both of which I have driven.

Volvo makes it easy to get inside this vehicle, by using keyless entry and a hands-free tailgate. When you are ready to load your cargo, just wave your foot under the rear bumper and the tailgate opens by itself.

Inside the cabin you’ll find a large, evenly shaped rear-cargo compartment. This design makes it easy to hold oversized objects. Just fold the seats down with the push of a button and you’ll get a fully flat load floor. You can also do this from the rear of the car, so that you don’t have to open the side door to fold the seats.

There is a range of technological features inside the cabin that are designed for comfort and ease, enhancing the quality of the driver’s experience. Essential information is conveyed through a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and a 9-inch Sensus Connected Touch infotainment system. Connective technology includes Wi-Fi hotspot as well as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration, which bringing the whole world within your reach.

For sound, the 800-watt Harman Kardon premium audio system, with 14 speakers, features HD Radio, two USB ports, Bluetooth hands-free with audio streaming, and SiriusXM Satellite Radio—it’s all there at your fingertips. You can listen, connect, and communicate with a simple touch of the finger.

The T6 models are powered by a 2.0 L supercharged and turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which delivers 316 horsepower at 5,700 rpm, and 295 lb.-ft. of torque in the band of 2,200–5,400 rpm. The power is regulated by an eight-speed Geartonic automatic transmission with auto start/stop. The XC60 T6 achieves 19 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway for a 19 mpg average. During my test drive, I was just under that mileage.

The healthy engine in this mid-size SUV crossover allows for easy passing, getting you to the fast lane quickly. Likewise, you can take the off- and on-ramps at such a high speed that it’s simple task to ease into the general flow of traffic.

Inside the XC60. (Courtesy of Volvo)

Every part of the interior is luxurious. Some of the more enjoyable amenities include a laminated panoramic moonroof with power sunshades, leather-upholstered seating, a 10-way power-adjustable driver’s seat with memory function, and a park-assist camera.

However, the interior fell short for me in one regard. The armrest is too short to rest your entire right arm. When resting my arm, I experienced a dangling feeling as my hand fell into an area below the rest position.

Additional features to mention include a tailored dashboard that complements the vehicle’s split-folding backrest with a load-through hatch. And the heated wiper blades make for good service in cold winter weather.

The safety technology of the Volvo XC60 goes the extra mile to protect not only the passengers but also those folks near your vehicle. The vehicle is built around an extraordinary safety cage. The passenger’s compartment uses a high percentage of ultra-high-strength boron steel to create a protective cage around everyone in the car. Front and rear deformation zones help dissipate the crash energy. The seat belts also work together to cushion the driver and passengers in a controlled fashion.

Volvo has a whole list of safety and security features. The brand’s famous City Safety with Steering Support system detects other vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists, and large animals. Run-off Road Mitigation scans the road, front and behind, for possible run-off or collision and also pre-tightens the front seatbelts to keep the occupants safe. Lane Keeping Aid and Oncoming Lane Mitigation automatically steer the vehicle back into its own lane.

I especially like the Road Sign Information feature, which uses a forward camera to detect various road signs. If you exceed the speed limit, a speed-limit sign flashes on the info screen with the correct speed you should be going. The feature aided me several times, especially when I forgot I was still in a school zone. And the nice police officer who was issuing tickets for speeding only gave me a smile.

The suggested price for the XC60 starts at $39,200 for the base T5 Momentum trim. The Inscription trim, which adds more than $7,000 to the price, includes such features as the Driftwood decor inlays that enhance the beauty of the interior and 19-inch Inscription alloy wheels with all-season tires that complement the exterior.

Interestingly, the features of the Inscription package focus on luxury and appearance. Therefore, I would recommend finding out if these are what you really want before choosing this package.

Durhl Caussey writes a car column read around the world. He may be reached at this paper or at dcaussey@sbcglobal.net

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