- Published: Thursday, 31 August 2017 19:41
The latest model in Volvo’s ongoing renaissance wraps packs many of the brand’s proven, beloved features in a smaller package.
SINGAPORE - This is the all-new XC60, Volvo’s mid-sized Sports Utility Vehicle, and it’s just made its Singaporean debut. This is a hugely important car for the Swedish brand - it’s been the company’s best-selling model since 2009, and by itself is responsible for about a third for the company’s total global sales.
The XC60 is initially available in racy T6 R-Design guise, which features a 2.0-litre engine that’s turbocharged and supercharged, good for 320hp, 400Nm and a 0-100km/h time of 5.9 seconds. The R-Design trim (which is standard on the T6 here) brings various cosmetic bits to play up the car’s performance, too, such as these tasty bucket seats.
At S$258,000 with Certificate Of Entitlement, the XC60 T6 is positioned in a kind of No Man’s Land, more expensive — but also much more powerful — than its closest-priced rivals such as the Audi Q5 and Mercedes-Benz GLC.
In October the T5 Inscription model joins the lineup here, with a less powerful version of the same engine (single turbo, 254hp), which will be introduced in October at an indicative price of S$228,000.
This new second-generation car sits on a compact version of the Scalable Product Architecture that also underpins the S90 sedan, V90 wagon and XC90 SUV; no wonder it looks just like a shunk-in-the-wash version of the latter.
If you’ve ever spent time in any of the XC60’s bigger brothers, you’ll instantly be familiar with the cabin. You get the same jewel-like knobs and dials for the drive mode selector, engine start button and aircon controls, as well as the slick upright touchscreen in the middle of the dashboard.
As is traditionally the case for a Volvo, safety is a huge selling point. The XC60 boasts a couple of systems that the company claims are world-firsts - one is Oncoming Lane Mitigation, which will steer the car back into lane automatically if it detects the car is drifting over the lane markings and the driver takes no action.
The other is Run-off Road Mitigation and Protection, which will attempt to steer and brake the car to prevent an unintended road departure, and failing that, will tighten the seatbelts to keep you ensconced within the special energy-absorbing seats.
In addition, the XC60 also features an improved City Safety suite of functions, which will detect and warn the driver of errant vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians whether in the day or at night, and autonomously slam on the brakes if the driver fails to react.
The new XC60’s looks may be daring, but in the traditional Volvo sense, it’s still a safe choice.