Review: 2015 Volvo XC60 T6 AWD

Friday April 3rd, 2015 at 1:44 PM
Posted by: D.Colman

2015 Volvo XC60 T6 AWD

By David Colman

Hypes: The safest SUV You Can Buy
Gripes: Useless Owner’s Manual, Sea of Dog Cage Bars

The XC60 is a mid-size sports utility crossover based on the S60 sedan. For 2015, it presents a cleaner face to the wind thanks to a more streamlined front fascia. In conjunction with this newly lowered snout, Volvo stylists have visually elevated the XC60′s tail. Decisive side creases underline the aggressive stance, making this Volvo look like it’s about to pounce on prey. The illusion is not unsupported, because a powerful and willing twin-scroll turbo straight 6 lies under the hood, ready to devour pavement with alacrity. The 3.0 liter engine produces 300hp and 325lb.-ft. of torque, with full torque infusion coming on line at just 2100rpm. Coupled to a 6-speed automatic with standard paddle shifts, the XC6 T6 jumps when prodded, despite its substantial 4,275lb. curb weight.

2015 Volvo XC60 T6 AWD

While Volvo’s all-wheel-drive system is not designed for serious off-road work (there’s no transfer case), it will insure splendid traction on all forms of pavement. Our test XC sported $1,000 optional 20 inch diameter “Titania” alloys which mounted premium Pirelli Scorpion Zero tires measuring 255/45R20 at each corner. Despite their enormous diameter, these rims, which replace standard 18 inch wheels, look surprisingly delicate thanks to their almost invisible rim bead connected to 10 wafer-thin double spokes. The overall visual effect is similar to that of a Mattel Hot Wheels dream toy.

The interior shares the exterior’s exciting visuals, with a two-tone seat leather treatment adding Swedish modern sophistication to the $900 optional Sport Seating surfaces. In fact, if you are a fan of Mid Century Modern design, you will love the simplistic integration of materials and surface treatments in the cabin. For example, the center stack, a design nightmare in so many other SUVs, is here cleanly arrayed, devoid of frills, and operationally sound, with all key HVAC and Entertainment system functions accessible through separate buttons rather than menu driven nonsense. Particularly nice is the standard issue “Laminated Power Roof with Power Sunshade. This oversize opening can be configured in any number of useful ways, ranging from tilting the front panel, to sliding the shade wide open over all interior seats.

2015 Volvo XC60 T6 AWD

Volvo equipped the cargo area of our sports utility with a dog kennel apparatus that made the interior seem more like a Swedish police cruiser than a family wagon. Vertical and horizontal metal bars (called a “Safety Grill”) not only segregated the rear compartment from the passenger area, but also created a structure (called a “Load Organizer and Dog Gate”) large enough to house a medium size pet. With its hydraulic lift door, the Load Organizer proved very handy for safe transport of fragile items. The downside to the array of black metal bars is poor rear vision, and a sepulchral feel to the interior.

2015 Volvo XC60 T6 AWD

The expensive “Platinum” option, which boosts sticker price by $4,400, brings several important safety measures into play. Perhaps the most significant is the Technology Package, which includes radar controlled cruise control, collision warning with full auto-brake, pedestrian/cyclist detection with full auto-brake, and Driver Alert Control, which prevents your Volvo from straying out of its lane. In addition, our XC60 also featured a $900 optional “Blind Spot Information System Package” (BLIS) which consisted of small warning lights on the A pillars next to the rear view mirrors that illuminated orange when traffic impinged in adjacent lanes. This proved useful without becoming intrusive. The BLIS package also includes front and rear park assist beepers.

Although the XC60 has plenty of straight line punch, its handling is a notch below comparable sports utilities like BMW’s X3 and new X4, or Porsche’s Macan. The Volvo’s main weakness is its lack of precise steering feedback. In fact, even the range of vertical adjustment for the wheel itself is too limited to allow a sporty driving position. The XC’s suspension is also complicit, with too much pitch on corners, combined with too harsh shock damping over potholes. This makes for a ride that is simultaneously pitchy yet jarring. A final irritation comes courtesy of the purported Owner’s Manual, which inexplicably contains no index references to such basics as instrument location and function, or even cruise control operation. Consequently, I could never figure out how to adjust my cruise control default speed without changing it in 5mph increments.

2015 Volvo XC60 T6 AWD

The incredible array of safety measure Volvo brings to bear on its XC60, however, more than compensate for these trivial glitches. In fact, I can’t think of a better vehicle in which to avoid or survive an accident than this Volvo, given its standard Auto-Stopping Technology and optional and reasonably priced BLIS Package.

2015 Volvo XC60 T6 AWD

  • Engine: 3.0 liter alloy, in-line 6 with CVVT and twin-scroll Turbo
  • Horsepower: 300hp @ 5600rpm
  • Torque: 325lb.-ft. @ 2100rpm
  • Fuel Consumption: 17 MPG City/24 MPG Highway
  • Price as Tested: $51,675
  • Star Rating: 8 out of 10 Stars

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2011 Volvo XC60 R-Design Review – It’s got the brawn, but who’s got the brains?

Tuesday August 2nd, 2011 at 4:88 PM
Posted by: bclark

2011 Volvo XC60
By Bill Clark


  • Turbo V6 feels like a V8
  • Exterior and interior styling
  • Very comfortable
  • Versatile cargo capabilities


  • Mind-baffling electronics
  • Useless proximity key
  • R-design rear bumper not compatible with receiver hitch

Having tested a number of small crossovers, I can say with certainty that the Volvo XC60 is almost the perfect family crossover and certainly one that provides enough ‘fun factor’ to entertain car enthusiasts. I never expected to say that about a Volvo crossover. If it wasn’t for the frustrating vehicle electronics menu systems, I’d call it perfect.

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2010 Volvo XC60 Review – Safety in a sexy package

Wednesday February 18th, 2009 at 9:22 AM
Posted by: Derek

Review and photos by Derek Mau


  • More Volvo safety features than you can count
  • Excellent ride comfort and handling
  • Attractive styling with unique LED tail lights


  • Slippery front seats that don’t hold its occupants well
  • Two-tone leather upholstery for the seats that are best left in a Danish furniture store
  • Heavy curb weight doesn’t help fuel economy

Safety in a sexy package
Volvo’s mantra has always been about safety. It was a Volvo safety engineer, Nils Bohlin, who designed and engineered the three-point safety belt. The new belt design was introduced in 1959 and saved lives almost immediately. Whereby, Volvo made the three-point lap and shoulder belt freely available to all car manufacturers. While mostly on the conservative side, Volvo has long been associated with keeping the family safe and living life in the middle lane. The mere mention of the world Volvo conjures up the image of a beige 240 DL wagon with dad at the wheel and mom refereeing the kids on their way to grandma’s house. Well, Volvo is loudly proclaiming that their new performance, luxury crossover is the safest vehicle on the road today, and they put it in stylish package that will have you rethinking the buttoned-down image of Volvo.

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Volvo XC60 City Safety System Report

Monday January 19th, 2009 at 10:11 AM
Posted by: Derek

2010 Volvo XC60

The big safety news in the new Volvo XC60 is City Safety – a unique safety feature that can help the driver avoid or reduce the damage of low-speed impacts that are common in city traffic and bumper-to-bumper traffic. If the car is about to strike the vehicle in front and the driver does not react, the car automatically applies the brakes.

What! Why do a I need another electronic nanny and do I really want something that applies the brakes for me?

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New Volvo XC60 City Safety tour comes to a town near you

Friday January 9th, 2009 at 12:11 PM
Posted by: Derek

Volvo city safety demoVolvo is doing a big promotion across the country as it enters the luxury, performance-oriented, small SUV/crossover market with their new XC60. Two Parallel Tours will cross the country with more than 85 events, giving customers the opportunity to see the new XC60 before it goes on sale at dealerships and experience “City Safety” – Volvo’s most extensive safety package ever.

Using their strong reputation and association with car safety, Volvo has put together a live demonstration of their latest safety innovation – City Safety. According to surveys, 75% of accidents occur at speeds below 18 mph and in city traffic. Volvo’s new City Safety system helps the driver avoid or reduce low-speed collisions. CarReview attended one of the City Safety demonstrations. Follow the link to learn more about the City Safety feature and and how it operates.

Volvo XC60 City Safety System Report

For a hands on experience of Volvo’s latest safety feature, click the link below to find the place and date of the “From Sweden with Löv” tour stop nearest you.

Or read the press release on the next page to find out if “From Sweden with Löv” tour stops at a city near you. For more details about the “City Safety” system and other active Volvo safety features such as adaptive cruise control (ACC), blind spot information system (BLIS), collision warning w/auto brake, driver alert control, and lane departure warning information system, visit their website,

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Volvo XC60 Hill Test (video)

Thursday October 30th, 2008 at 9:1010 AM
Posted by: Derek

The new crossover SUV from Volvo – the XC60 – has a 3.0L turbo-charged six cylinder engine. This crossover is no pushover getting some extra giddyap from a twin-turbo setup that produces 281 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. Dynamic Stability and Traction Control (DSTC) is one of the most vital safety advances in the past decade by helping prevent spinouts, fishtails, and rollovers.

The new XC60 has lots of torque for hill climbs and has a cool “hill descent control” feature for the other half of the hill. Watch Ulrika climb (and descend) a slope so steep it would make Edmund Hillary stain his shorts.

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Volvo XC60 Elk Test (video)

Wednesday September 24th, 2008 at 8:99 AM
Posted by: Derek

2009 Volvo XC60

The new crossover SUV from Volvo – the XC60 – has a 3.0L turbo-charged six cylinder engine. This crossover is no pushover getting some extra giddyap from a twin-turbo setup that produces 281 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. Dynamic Stability and Traction Control (DSTC) is one of the most vital safety advances in the past decade by helping prevent spinouts, fishtails, and rollovers. Further developed in the XC60 using a roll rate sensor, DSTC also enhances stability in dynamic driving where the vehicle is exposed to high lateral forces.

In the Netherlands (and Canada) it is common for elk or moose to wander onto the roadway. In the U.S. we have to watch out for deer who are easily mesmerized by a pair of halogen headlights. Watch Bjarne show off his nerves of steel while swerving at 100 kph (64 mph) on a slippery track.

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Test drive a Volvo XC60 at 125 mph (with no hands)

Monday September 15th, 2008 at 1:99 PM
Posted by: Derek

2009 XC60 - Volvo's new crossover SUV

The new crossover SUV from Volvo – the XC60 – has a 3.0L turbo-charged six cylinder engine (T6). This crossover is no pushover getting some extra oomph from a twin-turbo setup that produces 281 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. The twin-scroll turbo gives the T6 engine a wide power band such that maximum torque begins at 1,500 rpm. A powerful engine requires a transmission designed to handle the high torque of the T6 engine. Thus, the XC60 is equipped with a 6-speed Geartronic automatic transmission to move you along smoothly and quietly.

Volvo released a series of campaign videos promoting their new XC60 SUV. Watch the video as Viktoria shows off her skills and the stability of the XC60 at 200 kph – with no hands on the steering wheel! Watch the video after the jump

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Safe, stunning and smart – the new 2009 Volvo XC60 redefines the small premium crossover

Thursday March 6th, 2008 at 11:33 PM
Posted by: Derek

2009 Volvo XC60

Volvo’s new compact crossover SUV is falling back on its solid reputation of building safe cars. We tested a couple of Volvo cars (C30 and S80) and were never really impressed with their sport and performance features. Even though Volvo marketing efforts were focused on the performance aspects, experts at CarReview felt that the safety features of the cars reviewed were the real strong points. So, it is good to see Volvo hyping up their City Safetyand other safety systems with their new XC60.

The entire XC60 safety package includes a fully integrated alcohol lockout system, Driver Alert Control that warns tired and inattentive drivers with monitoring alerts between lane markings, Adaptive Cruise Control that uses radar sensors to continuously monitor the vehicle in front and adjust road speed accordingly.

And the list of safety features continues:
• Distance Alert helps the driver maintain a preset time gap behind the vehicle in front, even when active cruise control isn’t on.
• Blind Spot Information System detects vehicles in the blind spot during daylight and darkness.
• Intelligent Driver Information System controls driver distraction by delaying incoming phone calls or text messages.
• Lane Departure Warning alerts the driver with a sound if the car crosses lanes without a turn signal.
• Collision Warning fires red warning lights on the windshield and sounds a buzzer sounds if you’re approaching another vehicle.
• Collision Warning with Auto Brake offers an audible and visible signal, then engages the brake pads before braking automatically.
• Emergency Brake Lamps start flashing from their high-mounted position when you press hard on the brake pedal, then turn to solid light.

Continue reading for the official press release from Volvo as the XC60 is featured during this week’s Geneva Motor Show.

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