Review

Volvo XC60 SUV

Price  £31,660 - £39,890

Volvo XC60 SUV

reviewed by Carbuyer

Pros
  • Good-looking, classy shape
  • Frugal diesel models
  • Very safe
Cons
  • Five-cylinder diesels aren’t very efficient
  • Sluggish automatic gearbox
  • Not much fun to drive

At a glance

The greenest
D4 (190hp) Start/Stop SE 5dr £31,660
The cheapest
D4 (190hp) Start/Stop SE 5dr £31,660
The fastest
D5 AWD (220hp) Start/Stop R-DESIGN Nav 5dr £37,265
Top of the range
D5 AWD (220hp) S/S R-DESIGN Lux Nav 5dr £39,890

"Stylish, easy to drive and very comfortable, the Volvo XC60 also offers class leading safety and strong resale values."

The XC60 is Volvo's answer to compact premium SUVs such as the BMW X3, Audi Q5 and Mercedes GLA. However, it's not as fun to drive as any of these and is now beginning to feel its age. Since it was launched, the market has really taken off, with Nissan and Mazda now offering equally capable and attractive SUVs for much less money. The XC60's premium styling inside and out, along with Volvo's reputation for safety, mean it still manages to remain appealing.

In common with its rivals, the XC60 is not as capable an off-roader as the more expensive Land Rover Discovery Sport, since it's tuned more for on-road driving. On this point, two-wheel as well as four-wheel-drive versions are available. The former offer improved fuel economy and a lower list price.

The XC60 looks and feels like the estate cars found elsewhere in Volvo's range. It features the brand's distinctive 'floating' dashboard design, which looks cool, is easy to operate and which frees up space for an extra cubbyhole behind the centre console.

The XC60 may not be especially good fun to drive, but it does offer a composed and quiet ride and extremely comfortable seats. For these reasons, it's a great motorway cruiser. In this role, the powerful yet economical 2.0-litre D4 diesel engine really shines. It can achieve 64.2mpg for an annual road tax bill of £30, while still being capable of 0-62mph in 8.5 seconds. In SE trim, it's our pick of the XC60 range.

If the security of four-wheel drive suits you better, the 2.4-litre D4 diesel still manages an impressive 53.3mpg. However, it's an older design than the D4 fitted to the two-wheel-drive models and not as refined. In comparison, the only petrol in the range, the T6 with four-wheel drive (there's no two-wheel-drive option), achieves a disappointing 26.4mpg.

Trim levels fall broadly into two camps: comfort-oriented SE and sporty R-Design, each with luxury and navigation-equipped variants. Regardless, the standard equipment list is generous, with all versions sporting DAB digital radio, climate control and a powered tailgate.

Volvo has a reputation for building safe cars and the XC60 is no exception. It earned five stars in the Euro NCAP crash tests, not only for its impact performance but also for its array of safety equipment. This includes dual-stage airbags, a blind-spot warning system and City Safety – an automatic emergency braking system that can detect an imminent collision at speeds under 19mph and warn the driver to take action, before applying the brakes automatically.

MPG, running costs & CO2

2.6 / 5

Specify the Volvo XC60 with the D4 diesel engine and you can achieve excellent fuel economy

Engines, drive & performance

3 / 5

Safe and solid, but the Volvo XC60 is uninspiring on country roads

Interior & comfort

3.6 / 5

The Volvo XC60 is an incredibly relaxing car to travel in

Practicality & boot space

3 / 5

The Volvo XC60's interior is spacious and practical, with plenty of room for three in the back

Reliability & safety

3.8 / 5

Customers don’t rate it as highly as they used to, but the Volvo XC60 is still a well liked family car

What the others say

4 / 5
based on 2 reviews
4 / 5
While off-road ability is limited, Volvo says the raft of electronics, coupled with the raised body height, will ensure few cars encounter significant traction issues. It's effortless at speed, and a particulate filter cuts dirty exhaust emissions.
4 / 5
The XC60 is a brilliant family car. It's practical, classy, good to drive and scores highly for safety. The front-wheel drive version is notably more affordable to own than other models in the range.
What owners say 
4.1603174603175
4.2 /5 based on 63 reviews
68%
 of people would recommend this car to a friend
Last updated 
18 Mar 2015
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