2019 Volvo V60 T6 AWD Wagon: redesign is right on point for this premium wagon

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New Volvo V60 exterior

By Asian Journal Auto Editor

Volvo’s 2019 V60 wagon is seen as a successor to the immensely popular Volvo V70 wagon. The 2019 V60 is a tad smaller, but shares the same versatile SPA architecture. There is a strong family resemblance of course, with a 4.6 inch longer stretch from the outgoing V60, the same wide stance and sleek elegant flanks. The new car also has a much larger glasshouse. The wheelbase has grown 3.8 inches, so along with the increase in length, Volvo claims a 20 percent increase in load space as well as the most interior room in its class.

The V60 is available with the choice of two powertrains for now: the T5, a 250-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder with front wheel drive and the T6, as tested with the 316-hp turbo- and supercharged version of the 2.0 engine with All-Wheel Drive. Transmission for both is an eight-speed automatic. The V60 Volvo is available in two main trim levels: the entry Momentum and Inscription that arrives with such upscale niceties as driftwood inlay trim panels for the interior, as standard 18-inch alloy wheels, an upgraded 12.3-inch digital instrument panel and Harmon Kardon premium audio. Leather seats are standard on both, but the Momentum V60 can also be ordered with very chic plaid cloth seats. A special R Design version will up the ante with Inscription specification, plus paddle shifters and a unique interior and exterior graphic package. That’s not all. A 400-hp hybrid T8 plug-in hybrid is also slated for Canada. There may also be a performance orientated Polestar model, while a V60 Cross Country version, with all-road capability, and a higher ride height is also available.

The V60’s interior looks elegant and upscale. Warmer, and less severe than a BMW or and Audi, and less fussy –looking than an Acura, Infiniti or Cadillac. High-quality materials and excellent finish are a hallmark. The seats are, in the typical Volvo fashion, very comfortable and supportive on long journeys. The Volvo infotainment system—knowns as Sensus Connect,—is now 50 percent more powerful with a faster startup time, faster access to the backup camera, better voice control, and quicker satnav output. Of course the Sensus Connect accommodates Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and when fitted, the Volvo nav software enables the cruise control to access mapping data and adjust speeds through corners where appropriate.

The rear cabin is roomy and offers good legroom and headroom. The trunk is simply huge, roomier than the bigger Volvo XC60 SUV. Volvo says the V60 can handle 529 litres of cargo. With the back seat down, luggage capacity swells to a humongous 1,441-litres. As expected, safety is highpoint on any Volvo. The V60 comes standard with a huge array of Volvo automated safety technology, including steering, braking, and lane-keeping assist functions to help with drivers and occupant safety. The V60 also introduces Volvo’s new Oncoming Braking function, a safety system that when it sense’s a “last resort” head-on collision, automatically activates maximum braking. The system goes into action two-tenths of a second before impact and can reduce vehicle speed by 10 km/h.

On the road, the V60 impresses with its relaxed easy going driving dynamics. The T6 four-cylinder delivers smooth linear power without turbo lag. 316 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque is not be sneezed at for sure. Acceleration is good and the all-wheel drive chassis feels well balanced. The steering is responsive, and sharp. The gearbox is a bit slow to downshift, but with four drive modes—Eco, Comfort, Dynamic, and Individual, the V60 can be goosed up. Comfort is the best default everyday driving mode, while Dynamic mode spices things up a bit. The ride by the way is excellent, with a smooth, stable composure.  If it is a choice between a SUV and the V60 when it comes to winding road, the V60 is the one I would pick

The new redesigned 2019 Volvo V60 has a lot going for it. Rare pedigree looks and heritage, impeccable safety, AWD, and an SUV- beating interior. It’s a great alternative to the more expensive wagons from the likes of BMW and Audi. Although they might have a slight performance edge, the Volvo doesn’t stiff you with heart-attack inducing option prices. It has a more discerning look and interior, and comes in at much more value when you price it out. Highly recommended. Best all-round premium wagon around for now!

2019 Volvo V60 Wagon priced from $43,900. – Momentum T6 AWD MSRP $48,900. Inscription T6 AWD MSRP $55,400. More info at www.volvo.ca