SUVs have been too close to Indian hearts for a while now. The aggressive design, spacious cabins and pure performance of their powerful mills have made SUV’s the highest selling category in the luxury space. While the Germans have been ruling the mid-sized luxury SUV space, Volvo, a relatively new entrant in our market has been slowly and surely making a name for itself with the XC60.
We at LuxuryLaunches drove the XC60 for a week to find out how this globally hot-selling luxury SUV irons out the wrinkle, predominant in the Indians’ minds – why opt Swedish?
Two words – Clean and classy.
Volvo has only launched the highest trim i.e. the Inscription trim in India. Under the hood is a 2.0 litre four-cylinder engine that churns out a peak power of 235 bhp, and peak torque of 480 Nm. While the engine may seem a bit underpowered for a vehicle of this size, it is not. The engine is mated to a eight speed automatic gearbox that delivers a very smooth and an occasional punchy ride.
The engine is tuned to near perfection, there is literally no vibrations or noise at low RPM’s (City traffic). Unlike the other heavier Germans which are cumbersome to drive at lower speeds this one actually drives like a sedan.
Sculpted on the Scalable Product Architecture platform (SPA) borrowed by the company’s flagship SUV – XC90, the XC60 looks very similar to its elder brother. While driving around in Mumbai, I could not help but notice that the XC-60 was turning heads. And why not, it’s a beautiful car and refreshingly different from the Germans. it’s face dons the Thor’s Hammer-inspired LED DRLs, smart looking edges near the cheeks contouring from the A-pillar, and a plush-looking grille and aggressive bumper, give the XC60 a sporty look.
Features: A shot in the arm
Synonymous to the exteriors, the XC60 doesn’t miss out on much of any features as of those present on the XC90. The dashboard feels opulent despite the use of plastic inserts at certain spots. Being more driver-committed, the slightly tilted infotainment system is designed smartly in the second gen car, where most of the buttons are excluded and instead their functions are clubbed together in the appealing 9-inch touchscreen portrait-styled infotainment system. The system is so efficient that one can adjust anything from the four-zone climate control to the headrest position of the back seat with just a couple of touches on the screen.
Beautiful seats designed by orthopaedic surgeons will make sure you are refreshed even after a long drive.
The front seats are made of Nappa leather adding to the soft and luxurious feel. They come with a range of aligning and heat adjustments and are claimed by the company to be specially designed by orthopaedic doctors with massage points. The massage points helped me keep my calm and attention focused on the road despite the frequent switch between accelerating and brake in the bustling traffic of Mumbai.
This has to be the best sound system I have ever experienced.
The impressive Bowers & Wilkins audio system in the car gives a clear, crisp and one-of-its-kind audio experience, cancelling almost all the ambient noise from the outside. I must say it is one the best sounding audio systems not only in the segment but the in the market. The passengers on the back can enjoy their favourite songs while gazing at the beautiful sky through the wide sunroof.
A 360 degree view for easy parking.
The car automatically brakes itself if it detects a collission.
Automatic driving, bring it on –
Its just not about comfort the XC60 exceeds all when it comes to driver assistance as well. The car comes with blind spot detection, a very handy feature for a car of this size in our traffic, should you decide to switch lanes the car automatically check for vehicles and warns you with a red light on the respective side mirror. A boon, especially in rush hour. Then there is auto parking, lane assistance and my personal favorite adaptive cruise control, the XC60 automatically locks onto the car ahead of you and maintains the speed, should that car brake so would you. It takes a while getting used to the car driving on its own, but once you do, its fun and relaxing.
Just love the lane assist feature.
Air suspension lowers the car, making it easy for seniors and kids to get in and out.
Drive modes – Shortcomings & Likes
Testing for the car’s resilience, I went a tad bit harsh to check the driving modes offered by the XC60. The Comfort mode adjusts the air suspension to a soft setting, it was ideal for our roads, the car would just glide over the bumps and potholes I was equally impressed by the Dynamic mode because it lives up to what one expects from the SUVs i.e. sportier driving characteristics and faster acceleration response. In the Dynamic mode, the steering wheel gets heavier and the drive feels more committed to rev this prowess while least considering about the road conditions.
The suspension is adjusted for comfort and performance both.
As the Volvo XC60 comes to India as a CBU (Completely Built up) it a expensive than its German and Japanese peers. Having said that it makes up for the increased price by offering features that its competition does not also offer in a segment above the XC60. The XC60 offers it all, it looks good, is comfortable, is fun to drive and is loaded to the teeth with tech and features.
[More info at:Volvo India]
|Engine||1969 cc, Diesel|
|Power||235 bhp @ 4250 rpm|
|Torque||480 Nm @ 1750 rpm|
|Top speed||210 Km/h|
|City fuel efficiency||8 km/l|
|Highway fuel efficiency||12 km/l|
|Safety||ABS with EBD. Traction control, ESP, Ride Height Adjustment|
|Price, ex-showroom||Rs 77 Lacs (Mumbai)|