Volvo XC90 review

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Published on January 31, 2017

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The XC90 is a very important car for Volvo.

I may be giving away the conclusion, but there are 1,000 happy people. That many XC90s were sold, before anyone could drive it. There was a sneak preview and we saw it on our website a lot. This is a very important car for Volvo. It’s the first car which was fully developed by them as independent car manufacturer. Geely is still the owner, but they let Volvo do what it wants.

It has a completely new platform, new engines, and new interior bits. There’s a lot to tell, so I’m going to hurry. First, the looks. I think it’s brilliant. It’s pretty, though that’s personal. It’s very Volvo. It’s modern, so some may think it’s too much. I think that’s OK, because the previous XC90 lasted 12 years. Who knows how long we’ll have to deal with this one. Especially the interior looks modern. Volvo says it was designed around the occupants. The interior looks very pretty. Of course, that’s personal as well. This is a version with unpainted wood. I think it looks nice. Pretty leather, pretty details such as in the T8 plug-in hybrid: a crystal gear knob. It’s but a small thing, but it looks good. Let’s talk about the new satnav. Volvo satnavs were OK. This one is based on touchscreen. You may be worried about it being user friendly, but this one works perfectly. From the start I knew this to be good. You can swipe left and right for settings. You have to know this. Some things could be better. I hope this will be fixed. You don’t have to worry about safety either.

This XC90 goes further with its cage. It has 7 seats. Even in the back you’re well protected. There are electric safety features like city safety, which detects other traffic; in the dark as well. There is run off the road protection. If you leave the road it’ll tighten the seat belts. A mechanism in the seat absorbs the impact, so your spine is protected. There are a lot more features, but we’ll let those slide. Under the hood are newly developed engines. We know some from the V40, V60, XC60, S60, etc. The base engine is a D4 diesel with 187 hp, FWD, 68,000 euros. Another diesel has 222 hp. That’s the new D5, still a 2-liter 4-cylinder, just like the other engines. The D5 has 222 hp. 0-62 mph takes seconds, the top speed is 137 mph. It’s quick, but I think it’s not quick enough.

I’m spoiled. The gasoline T5 engine has 251 hp, but I say choose the T8. That’s a plug-in hybrid, so 14% additional tax liability. 14, because 59 grams CO2 emissions. Driving it is fantastic. You still have a 2-liter 4-cylinder T6 engine, but an electric motor as well. 81 hp, for a total of 395 hp and 472 lb ft torque. That’s a fast car. 0-62 mph takes seconds, the top speed is (probably limited to) 143 mph. I miss the luxury of hearing more cylinders (5, 6 or 8), but it’s not that bad. Handling… It’s a comfortable car. It’s large, so it doesn’t like tight roads. It’s not out of place there, but you won’t buy a XC90 for its great handling.

The suspension is great, though. There are drive modes, from comfort ’til dynamic. It’s different for the T8, which you can drive fully electric. The electric motor and combustion engine working together in the T8 is very good. These are pre-production models, so some things aren’t finished yet. I notice it sets off well. The first feet on its electric motor, after which the combustion engine joins in seamlessly. There are few brands for which this works so well. It’s even better than in the V60. Then, the prices and Autoblog advice. It starts at 68,000 euros for the D4 with FWD. The T5 with AWD is 69,000 euros, the D5 with AWD is 73,500 euros. The T8 with 395 hp is 75,995 euros. 76,000 euros with 5 euros change. This is the cheapest car with 395 hp in the Netherlands. If you like Swedish porn with nice leather things and wood and you don’t want to pay a lot of additional tax liability, I’d choose the T8. Most customers do, because 80% of the orders so far is a T8. Subs – Maru.

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