Volvo XC60 T8 Twin Engine hybrid - Interior & comfort
The Volvo XC60 T8 Twin Engine hybrid has a splendid interior
The Volvo XC60 T8 Twin Engine hybrid helps cement Volvo’s reputation as a premium manufacturer. It’s beautifully built, tastefully designed and very well equipped. Yes, the T8 model is significantly more expensive than the rest of the XC60 range, but the trim levels it’s available with are very luxurious and shouldn’t leave you feeling short-changed.
Volvo XC60 T8 Twin Engine hybrid dashboard
If you’ve sat in or seen the normal XC60 – or its larger XC90 brother for that matter – you’ll know what to expect in the T8 model: a luxurious and tasteful dashboard with excellent fit and finish, and high-quality materials throughout.
You start the engine by turning a pleasingly tactile knurled metal knob by the gearlever, while a similar finish is given to the driving mode selector next to it. Both are lovely things to touch, although as you roll the mode selector to your chosen setting (AWD, Pure, Hybrid, Power or Off Road) before pushing to confirm your selection, it’s too easy to select the wrong mode when you’re trying to confirm the one you’ve highlighted.
Volvo’s Sensus portrait infotainment touchscreen system handles most of the car’s heating, ventilation, mapping and entertainment functions. It’s very slick, with crisp graphics, but it can be a little too involved, with deep layers of submenus. You’ll get used to it the more time you spend with it, but BMW’s iDrive and Mercedes’ COMAND systems are simpler to use.
The T8 is different from the rest of the XC60 range in one detail, though: it gets a crystal glass gear selector, and this is worth mentioning in more depth. While conventionally engined XC60s have a traditional automatic gearlever that stays in position when you select drive, park or reverse, the T8’s crystal selector is sprung and always returns to its central position.
That means if you’re in Drive and want to go into reverse, you need to push it forward once to select neutral, then again to select reverse. This is no hardship, but it’s worth noting you can’t tell what drive mode is selected just by checking where the lever physically is, as it always rests in the same position – you need to look at the telltale R, N, D and B letters on the central console.
Oh, and if you’re wondering, the ‘B’ stands for Brake. Select this mode and when you lift off the accelerator the energy generated by the XC60 slowing is used to charge the battery – a process known as regenerative braking.
Volvo offers the T8 in two trim levels: R-Design Pro and Inscription Pro. Both have cruise control, a leather steering wheel, a powered tailgate, LED headlights, adjustable air suspension, a heated steering wheel, a 12.3-inch digital dashboard display, heated leather sports seats, sat nav and a 10-speaker 330w stereo.
While R-Design Pro is geared towards sportiness and comes with 21-inch alloy wheels, Inscription Pro is plusher and brings softer leather and a ventilation function for the seats, as well as slightly smaller 20-inch alloys.
There are three option packs for the XC60. The £1,500 Intellisafe Pro bundle brings a semi-autonomous experience thanks to adaptive cruise control and Steer Assist, as well as cross-traffic alert (which scans for obstacles when reversing) and lane-keeping assistance.
The Convenience Pack brings power-folding rear seats and a divider for the boot and rear seats for £400, while the Xenium Pack comprises a 360-degree bird’s-eye camera and a self-parking system, and costs £1,000.
Individual options include heated rear seats for £200, a retractable tow bar for £995 and front parking sensors for £325. As the XC60 is a large car, this last option is worth having.