Volvo XC60 D5 AWD Test Drive


Thread Starter #1
Joined
Jun 29, 2011
Messages
31
Likes
4
Location
Pune
As the XC90 veered into the dimly lit basement parking area, my face was glued to the side window for that first glimpse of the one I had been waiting for, for what seemed like years.. And then, I saw her.

The shimmer of bronze in that inadequate light, a sparkle running along those curves as we passed and head to a slot to park. I ran and literally hugged her. Arms spread across the rear quarter glass and tailgate as I kissed her softly on her fantastic LED tail. She was here!

The XC60. Volvo had come in years ago with two models - the S80 and XC90 - two solidly built cars that did what they had to do in an elegant, trouble-free, no-nonsense manner. Comfort, practicality, posh-feel, and of course, safety, were there in bucketloads. But, and this is a big one, they weren't up on the equipment level and did seem to be a bit drab compared to the world leaders they were supposed to go up against - BMW and Mercedes-Benz.

I'll admit it, brand value is a strong decider in our country. And anyone in their right mind would go out and buy one of the two brands - or an Audi, or perhaps even a Jag - as their first luxury car. But a Volvo, crikey, they had to think more than twice about that, unless they were regulars abroad, or if they were aware of the brand and what it stood for.

Enter the XC60. Loaded to the neck with technology and either world-first, or segment-first features in abundance, this one was one to be reckoned with. She looks the part. She has the gizmos. And, she is capable of going as good as she looks. So let's get on, shall we..

[img=http://img830.imageshack.us/img830/4192/xc60front.th.jpg]
 
Last edited:
Thread Starter #2
Joined
Jun 29, 2011
Messages
31
Likes
4
Location
Pune
Volvo XC60 D5 AWD - Looks

[img=http://img198.imageshack.us/img198/5750/xc60open.th.jpg]

The new face. Volvo's "dynamic new approach", further enhanced by those twin DNA lights up front on either side of the new grille, brings LED sparkle up front, but not in an obscene way like a certain German marquee. Agreed, the original bearer who flaunted the look (read A4) was fine, but now, it's getting a little hard to swallow. Everything from a rickshaw and an Indica to Range Rovers and Bentleys have those eyesore lights that make you wonder, "Really, you wanna put that on THAT!" Off topic, back to the 60. Yes, she looks like no other Volvo ever made.

[img=http://img836.imageshack.us/img836/584/xc60side.th.jpg]

That smiling front, those Active Bending Dual Xenon Headlamps, that line that starts behind her eyes, and follows her body as a shoulder line, rising higher and higher, lending those oh-so-perfect contours, and ending high up the flanks in those gorgeous strip of LEDs that take the Volvo signature tail to a new plane altogether. Nothing, I repeat, nothing can ever be mistaken for an XC60 with those set of lights on her backside..

[img=http://img98.imageshack.us/img98/4038/xc60rear34.th.jpg]

[img=http://img717.imageshack.us/img717/7985/xc60r34.th.jpg]
 
Last edited:
Thread Starter #3
Joined
Jun 29, 2011
Messages
31
Likes
4
Location
Pune
Volvo XC60 D5 AWD Test Drive -

Comfort

Open the huge doors, and you're greeted by some sporty seats - X shaped patterns are accentuaed by a dual-tone interior of Espresso Brown and Soft Beige. Of course, you can choose Offblack or Soft Beige if you prefer a single-tone. Leather is top notch - genuine premium European leather graces the insides, even on the door panels. Look closer and you notice the different grain. Smooth in the middle and rough on the edges and door panels. The front seats are truly pampering, with multiple electric adjustments for slide, recline, seat and cushion height along with manual lumbar support, you can set up the seat to hold you snug, or to grip you when you're on the edge - as you like it then..

The rear seats are larger than those in the XC90, and there's also a proper arm rest in the centre - complete with cup holders and storage. The booster-cushion is gone from the middle seat, but that of course makes way for the optional 2-stage booster seats on the sides! The 2nd row is fixed and cannot be slid like the XC90's. Of course, they will fold down 40:20:40 to enlarge the already massive boot, which offer loads of space - 495 litres, and upto 1450 litres with the second row folded down. There's also a charging point, load cover and a load containing net. The tailgate is also powered, and can be opened in one of three ways - the button on the dash, the key fob, or the touchpad on the gate itself. Closing it is as easy as pushing the button on the bottom, and yes, it does have a resistance check, which makes it reopen. Quite safe then this I'd say.

[img=http://img543.imageshack.us/img543/7062/xc60boot1.th.jpg]

[img=http://img684.imageshack.us/img684/8450/xc60boot.th.jpg]

The dual-zone automatic climate with air quality is standard as well. Four vents up front and twin vents in the B-pillars take care of rear seat occupants.

There's also the large (optional) panoramic sunroof with sunblind, or should I call it an electric sun curtain.

[img=http://img829.imageshack.us/img829/1055/xc60sunroof.th.jpg]

Yes, this two-piece laminated and tinted glass setup meets "Volvo's safety standards" so I'm sure it can even handle a rollover. Not that that's ever gonna happen, unless the circumstances are pretty strange. More on that later..
 

AMG

Suspended
Joined
Oct 1, 2009
Messages
4,032
Likes
327
Location
N/A
Do your uncle/aunt/neighbour/cousin/girlfriend/dad/grandpa own a Volvo dealership?
 
Thread Starter #5
Joined
Jun 29, 2011
Messages
31
Likes
4
Location
Pune
Volvo XC60 D5 AWD - Dynamics

Okay, it's a Volvo. So no one would usually expect it to be anything out of the ordinary for a Volvo, which is orderly, stable and controlled. But you'd be wrong. For the "60" range always has been the sportiest of all, and this one takes it to another level. The Dynamic Stability and Traction Control (DSTC) is there as always, but with a new "Sport" mode, which essentially means you can turn the spin control off. But, being a Volvo, the system will peep over your shoulder every now and then to make sure nothing goes too wrong. Of course, it's a new program, and features tweaks to the handling as well. The Roll Stability Control (RSC) features a gyroscopic sensor that senses body roll and counters it effectively, making it the best handling of it's lot. Suspension is top notch with MacPherson Struts up front and independent Coil Springs at the rear, both with hydraulic shock absorbers and stabilizer bars. These again enhance the car like handling, while at the same time take perfect care of occupants off the road as well.

[img=http://img232.imageshack.us/img232/5679/xc60int1.th.jpg]

Also standard, is the Active 4C - which features 3 drive modes - Comfort, Sport and Advanced - allowing you to switch the complete feel of the car on the fly. "Sport" mode is ideal for the city. It gives you a slightly stiffer suspension, better agility and and overall more energetic feel. "Comfort" softens the ride and steering feel, but at the cost of lethargic response. "Advanced" basically transfers the road surface to your seat - with the best handling, but also with a jittery ride. Overall, it's the fact that you get all these three modes in one car, and you have to drive it to believe how different the car feels in each of them.

The all-wheel-drive system has a big part to play in this as well, as are the 17" wheels (Segin pattern) and those familiar 235/65 R17 tyres which offer a good ride and low road noise. It also helps that these are easily available, with most others in this segment running the same rubber.

The Hill Descent Control is also standard. This feature is useful if you end up going offroad somewhere very steep and have a few second thoughts if you're going to make it back down okay. All you need to do is shift into 1st (using Geartronic D-1) or into "R" and the car will get you down safely, at upto 10kph in 1st and upto 7kph in reverse. Yes, the system works in both directions. All you need to do is steer yourself out of trouble while the onboard computer controls your throttle and braking. Of course, the intended buyer may not always have a use for this, but it is there if you ever need it.
 
Thread Starter #6
Joined
Jun 29, 2011
Messages
31
Likes
4
Location
Pune
Volvo XC60 D5 AWD - Dynamics

Powertrain

A slick gearbox (yes, the old 6-speed Geartronic Automatic is back again) does duty of transferring power to all four wheels via the Haldex coupling - an intelligent system that is front biased and usually has over 90% of the power going up front. However, depending on how you put your foot down, it will vary to anything upto 50:50, and that results in some breathtaking, yet controlled and stable acceleration.

The workhorse on the XC60 is the EU5 spec 2.4 litre inline 5, sequential twin turbo, common-rail direct injection diesel that makes all of 205 horsepower and 420 Nm of torque. Although you may compare that figure with other SUVs, the kicker is that peak torque starts at 1500 rpm and stays flat and loaded all the way to 3250 rpm. That's a fat 1750 rpm torque band! Of course, those numbers lead to fantastic acceleration and efficiency figures. A point to note is that this engine is tuned for good bottom and mid-range driveability, but that doesn't stop it from hitting the century in just 9.5 seconds. Top whack is a very respectable 210 kph, though I doubt too many will ever reach those speeds given the traffic sense around. But still, 180kph is very doable, and there are plenty of stretches of highway where she can stretch those legs and sprint away.

All that technology and those sequential turbochargers also make sure that she is quite efficient - a fuel economy of 11-14 kpl pottering around the city is commendable, as is the 16-20 kpl it is capable of on the highway. These figures have been achieved mind you, but yes, it entirely depends on the driving style.
 
Thread Starter #7
Joined
Jun 29, 2011
Messages
31
Likes
4
Location
Pune
Volvo XC60 D5 AWD - Entertainment

Volvo Sensus - the smart infotainment system is here too, with the Harman group's High Performance Sound Multimedia, and, like the rest of the range, the Premium Sound upgrade is available as an option. The standard entertainment system includes 7" full color, high-resolution LCD screen, 8 loudspeakers on a 4x40W amplifier, a DVD player, a iPod-style remote control, and an aux-in and USB inside the centre armrest. Bluetooth with streaming audio is also standard, and you can have upto 10 phones paired to the system with full contact list. Overall, the standard sound system is very good. But once you've experienced Premium Sound, everything else pales in comparison.

Go for the option, and what you get is a 5x130W digital amplifier with MultEQ technology from Audyssey Labs, 12 loudspeakers all around for a Dolby ProLogic II certified theatrical experience. Every minute detail has it's space and is as clear as clear can be. I tried a lot of genres in there and believe me,
it gives "trance" a whole new meaning. Overall, it would be one option I would definitely check on the list, however long I would have to wait.
 
Thread Starter #8
Joined
Jun 29, 2011
Messages
31
Likes
4
Location
Pune
Volvo XC60 D5 AWD - Safety

It's a Volvo.

Okay, but since this car comes in with a host of world-first features, I will go on and elaborate. City Safety - the world's first laser and camera assisted automatic braking system debuted on the Volvo XC60. This system uses a camera and a laser to determine distance of obstacles or people up front and should the driver not have complete attention, or if their braking input isn't adequate, the system precharges the brakes upon detection, and then initiates a full auto brake if there is no response from the driver upon warning. This system, well at least the full auto brake, works at speeds upto 30kph. The system is effective even at 50 kph, where it will try and reduce the speed as much as possible to minimise damage upon impact. This sounds a little far fetched at first, until you experience the system yourself. And needless to say, it works everytime.

Of course, it doesn't just stop there, there's a whole host of the "usual" Volvo safety equipment. The safety cage is constructed in four grades of steel, aluminium and magnesium - to reduce weight wherever possible and keep keep it ultra strong where it needs to be. There's also the Side Impact Protection System (SIPS) with it's seats-on-cradle, dual-stage side airbag setup, as well as the Whiplash Protection System (WHIPS) which takes rear-end impact protection to another level.

Brakes are fantastic, with large ventilated 328mm discs up front and 302mm discs at the rear. Antilock brakes are standard alongwith the electronic brakeforce distribution system. The dual circuit braking system ensures maximum safety in any kind of critical situation. Fading brake support and ready alert brakes only add to the assurance of controlled and effective braking.

There's also the optional Blindspot Information System (BLIS) that includes two lasers mounted beneath each of the outside rear-view mirrors. These will flash a visual alert if there's is someone in the rear blindspot ie. if you cannot see them in either the inside rear view mirror or the ones outside. They initiate when someone going slightly faster than you is closing in and is about to pass, with or without your attention. The amber flashes are quite unique, and though quite small, still manage to get your attention instantly.

The Adaptive Cruise Control with Collision Warning is also on the options list and, like the BLIS and Premium Sound, requires a factory order. This system uses a radar sensor on the front grille, and works from 0-200kph, Although it needs to be activated above 30kph, the QueueAssist feature will automatically brake to slow down, and stop as well, remaining stationery for upto 30 seconds, before it will accelerate itself to keep up the set distance to the vehicle in front. I had covered the details in the previous article on the S60 and will reiterate that though Cruise Control is usually dismissed as useless in India, even on the highway this system is one-up on the regulars because it's great for stop-go traffic!
 
Last edited:
Thread Starter #9
Joined
Jun 29, 2011
Messages
31
Likes
4
Location
Pune
Volvo XC60 D5 AWD - Overall

What the XC60 is, is the perfect crossover. I find it very hard to pick faults with it (okay, more power would always be appreciated!) and that in itself puts it right up there. The immediate competition comes from the Audi Q5, BMW X3 and the Land Rover Freelander 2. A point to note is ahat all of these use a 4-inline engine, against the XC60's 5-inline, of course you could opt for the V6 TDi in the Q5, but at a much heavier price. The old X3 is gone, and the new one, at the time of writing this, is due in about 2 months time, so it remains to be seen if BMW have managed a leap as effective as the F10 5-series had on the E60. With the Freelander now coming out of my town, it is definitely a lot more cost-effective and spares isn't too much of an issue either, which is also the case for the Q5. However, taking it all into account, I'd say the XC60 has what it takes, and then some, to take on the more established brands, and so far it has been doing good numbers. Volvo have a winner here.

[img=http://img535.imageshack.us/img535/9827/xc60hill.th.jpg]

[img=http://img196.imageshack.us/img196/748/xc60rear.th.jpg]

Volvo XC60 D5 AWD

Sequential twin-turbocharged CRDi diesel
5 cylinder inline, transverse, front
2400cc
205 bhp @ 4000 rpm
420 Nm @ 1500 - 3250 rpm
6-speed Geartronic Automatic with All-Wheel-Drive
LxWxH (mm): 4627 x 1891 x 1713
Wheelbase: 2774 mm
Ground Clearance: 230mm
Approach Angle: 22°
Departure Angle: 27°
Breakover Angle: 22°
Wading Depth: 350mm
Wheels: 235/65 R17 V
Top speed: 210 kph
Tank capacity: 70 litres
Dry Weight: 1827 kgs

Price: Rs. 39.50 lakh ex-showroom
+57500 for Metallic paint
+127500 for Panoramic Sunroof
+82500 for Premium Sound
+95000 for Blindspot Information System
Adaptive Cruise Control will be offered as an option from MY2012 (ie. the next import lot)

Pros:
(+) Active 4C and great engine a good combo
(+) Precise handling with negligible body roll
(+) Long list of standard equipment
(+) Very comfortable seats
(+) Built like a safe
(+) Free service package includes oil, labor and all consumables

Cons:
(-) Extensive and expensive options list
(-) Cabin insulation could have been better
(-) Rear seat comfort and overall room could be improved
(-) Price should be more competitive
 
Thread Starter #10
Joined
Jun 29, 2011
Messages
31
Likes
4
Location
Pune
Do your uncle/aunt/neighbour/cousin/girlfriend/dad/grandpa own a Volvo dealership?
Until a few days ago, I was working for the Pune dealer. I've had the privilege of attending the training and launch events for XC60 and S60. So yes, the review is kinda extensive through my perspective, though, in my opinion, definitely not biased. Hope you like it. I'm trying to get the pics integrated, forgot what I did the last time. :S
 
Thread Starter #11
Joined
Jun 29, 2011
Messages
31
Likes
4
Location
Pune
Volvo XC60 D5 AWD - Family Comparison

Off the main post here, when compared to the XC90, the XC60 looks a lot fresher, well, because it is. The difference in height is negligible, and though you sit lower in the XC60, it is higher off the ground than even the XC90 - 230mm vs 218mm for the XC90. However, in my opinion, the XC90 is the most fun to drive of the lot.

[img=http://img823.imageshack.us/img823/6669/xc60xc90.th.jpg]
 
Joined
Oct 23, 2009
Messages
9,165
Likes
329
Location
Chennai
Great review of the XC60 HMMWV , loved reading it. To be frank i never knew anything about this car till i read this review , now i am liking this car!
 
Top Bottom