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2011 Volvo XC60

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2011 Volvo XC60 Review

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Volvo has a well established reputation for building safe, family-friendly wagons that are as reliable as a Maine winter. Unfortunately, consumers in general have no love for wagons, preferring instead small and midsize crossover vehicles. Given this scenario, the most logical step for Volvo was to create a new vehicle, one with the ride and handling of a wagon, but look and feel of a small SUV. Based on the sporty S60 sedan platform, the 2011 Volvo XC60 fills the void between the larger XC90 and the aging XC70 wagon. Smartly styled and competitively priced, the XC60 is well equipped to take on long-established luxury CUVs like the BMW X3, Lexus RX 350 and Acura RDX, not to mention new comers such as the Audi Q5 and Mercedes-Benz GLK350. Coupled with Volvo's long list of safety and engineering firsts, the XC60 makes a rather attractive prospect, and its numerous trim variations and engine choices enable it to compete with such premium competitors as the Subaru Outback Limited and Volkswagen Tiguan.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're seeking a midsize crossover with a strong emphasis on safety that doesn't conflict with the vehicle's sense of style and comfort, the 2011 Volvo XC60 certainly fits the bill. Available all-wheel drive allows the XC60 to tackle all manner of road conditions and even confidently venture off-road.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you want the security of all-wheel-drive, but without the higher price and lesser fuel economy of a six-cylinder engine, Audi's Q5 2.0-liter quattro is a better choice.

What's New for 2011

New for 2011 is the XC60 3.2 R-Design, which includes a leather interior, panoramic glass moonroof, HID headlamps with Active Light Bending technology and 20-inch alloy wheels. The base 3.2-liter V6 gets a five-horsepower bump, while the turbocharged models see an increase of 18 additional ponies, bumping output to 300 horsepower.

Driving the XC60

Driving Impressions We spent equal time in both the base XC60 3.2 and the top-of-the-line T6 R-Design and came away with two distinctly different driving impressions. The base XC60's 240-horsepower engine...

has enough muscle to allow safe passage onto freeways or when overtaking slower cars, but once you get a taste of the 300-horsepower turbocharged engine in the T6, there's no going back. The turbo spools up quickly meaning there is no lag in power or sudden rush after the engine reaches a particular rpm. While the driving dynamics improve markedly with the T6, the ride quality seems to diminish exponentially. Riding on 17-inch wheels and tires, the XC60 3.2 provides a smooth and comfortable ride with little tire noise entering the cabin. However, the T6 R-Design's stiffer suspension setup and 20-inch wheels make for a rather firm ride frequently punctuated by rude jolts when encountering nasty road distortions, and slightly more interior noise. During highway driving, we found both vehicles felt stable and well-behaved, tracking straight even on crowning pavement and responding instantly to steering wheel input.

City Safe
Distracted drivers are becoming more and more frequent these days, which is why we applaud Volvo making the City Safe feature part of the XC60's standard equipment. At speeds below 19 mph, City Safe detects stopped or slower-moving objects ahead and applies the brakes to slow the vehicle helping to avoid or lessen the severity of an impact.

T6 R-Design
Although the ride can be a bit stiff, we love the power, handling and elegant R-Design styling. For the money, we think the XC60 T6 R-Design is one of the most-alluring crossovers on the market.

2011 Volvo XC60 Details
2011 Volvo XC60 photo Interior

Functionally, there is nothing that stands out about the 2011 Volvo XC60's interior, but its aesthetics are notably interesting. Lovely contrasting colors adorn the seats and door panels while a distinctive open-back console plays home to the climate and audio controls. High on our plus list are the extremely comfortable bucket-style seats, and the long list of available electronic safety features that do everything from warn when the vehicle is drifting from its lane, to slow the car before an inevitable front-end collision can occur (this should be particularly helpful to those who can't help texting while driving). Not so impressive are the awkwardly placed and hard to turn manual lumbar adjustments, and the overly complicated screens on the available navigation system that, while artistic, are inferior to the simple touch screen menus found on any $100 Garmin unit.

Exterior

If there's one place the 2011 Volvo XC60 outshines most of its competition, it's the vehicle's exterior. Where most competitors display squared-off edges and boxy greenhouses, the XC60's slicked back profile, curvaceous sheet metal and highly stylized tail lamps speak to the driving enthusiast in all of us. To achieve the XC60's sleek roofline, Volvo engineers have created roof rails with minimal height, a design that also cuts down on wind noise. An available cross bar system can be attached to the rails and features a number of supports for bikes, skis, kayaks, windsurfers and a cargo box. There's even a gas-sprung lift-arm option to help lift your bike onto the supports. The R-Design models feature larger, more stylish wheels but the performance tires that come with the package lessen the XC60's off-road abilities, prompting us to recommend the base 3.2 or T6 trim over the R-Design if mud or snow is a part of your regular driving routine.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The most basic 2011 Volvo XC60 includes a 3.2-liter six-cylinder engine, six-speed Geartronic automatic transmission, front and rear skid plates and four-year/50,000 mile warranty. In addition to power windows, mirrors and locks, the Volvo XC60 includes heated outside mirrors, steering wheel-mounted audio controls, dual-zone automatic climate controls, cruise control, eight-way power driver's seat, tilt/telescopic steering wheel, Bluetooth, and 180-watt sound system with eight speakers, CD/DVD video playback, HD radio, Sirius Satellite Radio, and a USB input. Standard safety features include front side-impact airbags, side-curtain airbags, City Safe (a system that can slow the car at speeds under 19 mph when an object is detected ahead), electronic traction and stability controls, Trailer Stability Assist, whiplash protection seating and a tire pressure monitoring system.

Optional Equipment

A nicely-loaded 2011 Volvo XC60 T6 R-Design includes dual xenon headlamps with Active Light Bending technology, aluminum trim on the steering wheel, laminated panoramic glass moonroof with power sunshade, an eight-way power passenger's seat, leather seating surfaces, 20-inch "Cratus" alloy wheels, and R-Design inlays and contrasting interior panels. All-wheel drive is available on 3.2 and 3.2 R-Design models and is standard on the T6 and T6 R-Design. Volvo groups its most popular options into packages, including the Technology Package that adds Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane Departure Alert, and Pedestrian Detection with Full Auto Brake. The Climate Package brings heated front and rear seats, headlamp washers, heated windshield washer nozzles and rain sensing wipers, while the Multimedia packages adds a 650-watt premium Surround Sound audio system with iPod integration and navigation featuring Rear Time traffic, remote control operation and a rear backup camera. Standalone options include BLIS blind spot warning system, Volvo's Personal Car Communicator with Keyless Drive and two-way car communication, rear-seat DVD entertainment, and dual outboard rear child booster seats.

Under the Hood

The 2011 Volvo XC60 3.2 is powered by a 3.2-liter in-line six cylinder engine generating 240 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque. This dual overhead cam, 24-valve powerplant is fairly fuel efficient, runs on regular fuel and delivers its power without vibration or coarse sound. The T6 models receive a turbocharged 3.0-liter in-line six-cylinder engine that, like the 3.2-liter, runs on regular fuel yet pumps out an impressive 300 horsepower. Both engines are mated to the same six-speed Geartronic automatic transmission that allows for manual shift operation. And, despite its added power, the turbocharged engine nearly matches the normally aspirated 3.2 in city and highway fuel consumption.

3.2-liter in-line six
240 horsepower @ 6400 rpm
236 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/25 (FWD), 18/24 (AWD)

3.0-liter in-line six, turbocharged
300 horsepower @ 5600 rpm
325 lb.-ft. of torque @ 2100-4200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/22

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2011 Volvo XC60 Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.4
Out of 10

Based on 78 Ratings for the 2010 - 2016 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.2/10
    Quality
    8.8/10
  • Reliability
    8.7/10
    Performance
    8.7/10
  • Comfort
    8.9/10
    Styling
    8.9/10

My Volvo XC60 is stylish, reliable and awesome!

By on Tuesday, July 21, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 70,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Reliability, Comfort, Safety and Style"

Cons: "None yet!"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"Everything is right with this car, styling, performance, reliability, value and it's so fun to drive."

4 people out of 7 found this review helpful

Great driver, behind the times in technology

By on Friday, June 26, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 12,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
5/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
6/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
6/10
Comfort
3/10

Pros: "Probably the best "driver" I have ever owned."

Cons: "Behind the times in some of their so-called luxury"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 6

"I have driven this car from Ohio to Oregon and back and have to say, it is a true "road car". Great handling, acceleration, etc., but I am VERY disappointed in the Bluetooth and navigation technology. You have to go through several steps to make a phone call. In most all SUV's I tested, all you had to do is say "call home" and it dialed the number. With Volvo, you have to go through several steps (or more) just to call someone from your contact list. The navigation is fair to poor, particularly if you are using the "voice activation" system. I experienced one serious problem while returning from a trip in Oregon. At one point the navigation system told me to "bear left", which would have thrown me head on into oncoming traffic. The voice activation system also does now work very well at highway speeds. Overall, the vehicle is a great driver. I love that aspect of it. However, it you are buying a 2015 (not the 2015.5), beware of the so called technology that this car fails to provide."

18 people out of 38 found this review helpful

Great small SUV

By on Saturday, June 06, 2015

I owned and sold this car
Reason: Lease was up

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "smooth engine, nice interior"

Cons: "Volvo packaging of accessories"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"I moved from the XC90 to a XC60 and loved the change. The T6 is a very smooth engine and it drove great. Comfort is great although the back seats are a bit small. Only issue I have is how Volvo packages its options. I chose the version without navigation because of the upcharge; however this eliminates the backup camera and hands free dialing with the Bluetooth. For a mfr that touts safety, those two items should be standard. I did need new rear break pads after 45K miles, should have lasted longer."

19 people out of 38 found this review helpful

Love the seats

By on Thursday, May 28, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 42,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Seats, very fast car"

Cons: "Needs sliding visors for side use."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I have had this car four about 3 years. I use it for hunting in the winter therefore I spend a lot of time off roading with it in deep snow. To date, I have never been stuck! I have had a few issues with the air conditioner but all warranted and fixed."

10 people out of 18 found this review helpful

Excelente car

By on Friday, April 03, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 43,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This Is The most nice car ever, I love it because its safety, comford , shape, it is beautiful, and so on..."

29 people out of 53 found this review helpful

Would buy again

By on Tuesday, March 31, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 72,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought this car used with 30k miles on it. I've put 42,500 on it since (now has 72,500 total). I've been very happy with it and would buy again. The ride is very quiet, responsive. It's very comfortable even in harsh winter."

10 people out of 12 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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