Volvo XC60

The XC60 is available with a standard 3.2L inline 6-cylinder engine or 3.0L turbocharged inline 6-cylinder. A moonroof and all-wheel drive are both optional.

The 3.2L is rated at 240 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque. A sport-oriented R-Design model gets a 3.0L turbocharged engine that is a bit more powerful, making 300 horses and 325 pound-feet or torque that starts at a low 1500 rpm.

Power for both engines is routed through a Geartronic 6-speed automatic transmission, which also features a manual mode. All-wheel drive XC60s get a Haldex transaxle with Instant Traction, which constantly monitors the speed of the wheels, driver's throttle input, engine torque, engine speed and brakes to automatically direct power away from slipping wheels to those with traction.

Standard equipment throughout the lineup includes front and rear fog lamps, heated mirrors, satellite radio, power front seats, dual-zone climate control and keyless entry. Safety enhancements include 4-wheel antilock brakes, a host of airbags, tire pressure monitoring, day-time running lights and integrated turn signal mirrors. Standard safety equipment includes Dynamic Stability and Traction Control, Ready Alert Braking systems and Volvo's City Safety system, which utilizes an infrared sensor to automatically apply the brakes at slow speeds when an imminent collision is detected.

The standard Roll Stability Control uses a gyroscope to determine the vehicle's leaning angle and automatically activates pre-tensioners on all seatbelts and inflates a protective curtain when a rollover is detected. Hill descent control is also standard, utilizing the XC60's brake system to automatically control wheel speed while descending steep grades. An optional Collision Avoidance Package adds Volvo's lane departure warning system and a blind spot warning system.

Another significant Volvo safety system, City Safety uses radar sensors to detect imminent collisions and applies the brakes if necessary to avoid or mitigate a potential crash.

Popular options include a 650-watt Dolby surround audio system includes a navigation system and a rear-parking assist camera. The Technology package comes with adaptive cruise control with lane departure warning. Climate package includes heated front seats, headlamp cleaners and an interior air quality system. Blind spot information system, which Volvo calls BLIS and xenon HID headlamps are also optional.

Editors' Review

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The Volvo XC60 isn't the first vehicle that comes to mind when people start shopping for a compact luxury SUV. So far this year, the Audi Q5 and BMW X3 have sold 49,694 and 41,825 units, respectively. In the same time, Volvo has only moved 23,511 XC60s. After a week with the XC60 in T6 R-Design trim, I think many US car shoppers have gotten it wrong.

This Volvo offers more cargo space, safety and tech features than many of its rivals, all while undercutting them on price. It's arguably better looking than the others, too -- even more so (to my eyes, anyway) than the Alfa Romeo Stelvio. It's also remarkably nice to drive, especially in the T6 R-Design trim you see here, which I think is the sweet spot of the lineup.

Really, the XC60 is a compact luxury crossover that has it all. But is it enough to dissuade those who have their sights locked on the competition?

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The Good Handsome looks, plenty of power, confident handling and a comfortable ride. Did I mention it has best-in-class cargo space, too?

The Bad Infotainment could be improved. It can get expensive, too. With every option box ticked, you're looking at $79,280 for a compact luxury SUV.

The Bottom Line The Volvo XC60 is a top contender in its class, handily catering to the wants and needs of compact luxury SUV shoppers. Just go easy on the options.

Editors' Rating
  • Performance 7.5
  • Features 8.5
  • Design 8.5
  • Media 8

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