VOLVO V60 WAGON ENTER US MARKET FOR 2015
By Tom Crosby
Volvo has not been known for stylish cars but the V60 wagon has been introduced into the United States for 2015 after being successfully sold in Europe and will attract some second looks with its sloped rear, chrome rooftop rails and window surrounds.
While the exterior isn’t typical Volvo, behind-the-wheel it is pure Volvo with solid handling, a thick steering wheel and numerous safety driving features and options that complement the Swedish automakers marketing strategy and earned reputation for crash safety.
The V60 is based on the stylish S60 sedan’s architecture, a sibling that also eschews the boxy look.
Our test-drive V60 T5 DRIVER-E, outfitted with a $2,500 Premium Plus package that is tops among three V60 trims, was powered by a 240-horsepower, inline four-cylinder direct-injected turbo-charged engine with enough torque to be surprisingly quick off the starting line and peppy good on the highway.
Another added option was a $1,500 for a Sport Package that tightened the suspension, put manual paddles on the steering wheel, added shiny19-inch diamond cut alloy wheels and installed sport seats in the front.
A $900 blind spot package with cross traffic alert and lane change warnings, plus parking assist was also added along with options for the paint job ($550) and heated front seats ($50).
T5, by the way, is Volvo’s way of saying engine size, as in V6 and V8 engines, is no longer necessary with turbo-charged engines and 8-speed automatic transmissions like the V60, that can generate quickness off the starting line and also be more fuel efficient.
One aspect of saving fuel is the start-stop function that cuts the engine off when stopped and the foot is on the brake.
When taking the foot off the brake, the engine restarts and moves forward on its own – disconcerting and requiring re-braking right away.
To some it may be a plus, since the V60’s EPA rated 37-mpg on the highway is impressive.
Our front-wheel drive wagon handled well and the ride was smooth with just the right amount of road feedback from the front McPherson strut and rear multi-link suspension.
Interior cargo space of nearly 44 cubic-feet is ample with 40/20/40 folding rear seats and knick-knack nooks; rear seats are slightly tight for full-sized adults. The navigation system on 7-inch screen works well and the 8-speaker audio system doesn’t disappoint. Gauges are readable, dash controls easily reachable, and a knick-knack space is behind the console.
LIKES: Power, comfort, handling, ride, audio
DISLIKES: Stop/start function, side mirrors
BOTTOM LINE: Smaller wagon ideal for beginning family concerned about safety
- Base price w/destination fee $36,225
- Curb weight 3,527 lbs.
- Wheelbase 109.3 inches
- Length 182.5 inches
- Width 73.4 inches
- Engine specs 2.0-liter, inline 4-cylinder, turbo
- Horsepower 240-hp at 5,800 rpm
- Torque 258 lbs.-ft. at 1,500-4,800 rpm
- Transmission 8-speed Geartronic automatic w/manual paddles
- EPA Rating 25 city mpg, 37 highway mpg
- Range 17.8 gallons, regular fuel
- Performance 0-60 in just over 6 seconds