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2016 Volvo XC60

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2016 Volvo XC60 Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 8.5

Luxurious, fun to drive and distinctly Swedish, the 2016 Volvo XC60 luxury SUV competes in a crowded and tough segment of the market. Up the luxury of the Lexus RX, the agility and power of the BMW X3 and Audi Q5, but priced like the Acura RDX, this Volvo delivers. On top of that, it follows its own lead on styling, and leads the pack when it comes to safety innovations, as one would expect. The new 4-cylinder engines introduced last year offer plenty of power without sacrificing fuel economy, and its all-wheel-drive system provides assurance on slick roads. Then there's the XC60's best-in-class 5-star crash-test ratings, making the XC60 a top pick for buyers who have children.

You'll Like This Car If...

The 2016 Volvo XC60 luxury SUV offers advanced safety features, fuel-efficient engines, handsome styling that you don't see everywhere, a luxurious interior, and a reasonable price. If you're shopping for a premium luxury SUV, what's not to like?

You May Not Like This Car If...

We wish the Drive-E 4-cylinder engines were available across the board, but unfortunately, they're only available in front-wheel-drive (FWD) models, handing the all-wheel-drive (AWD) economy crown to the Acura RDX, Audi Q5 and others.

What's New for 2016

Two years ago the XC60 got new skin. Last year, it got two new 4-cylinder engines. This year it loses the old naturally aspirated 3.2-liter 6-cylinder.

Driving the XC60
Driving Impressions

Feel the Drive-E 4-cylinder engine in a front-wheel drive 2016 XC60 T5 or XC60 T6 smoothly deliver its excess of power, and you'll be hooked. The FWD XC60 T5 handily...

... outpaces the 2.5-liter 5-cylinder in the all-wheel-drive XC60 T5, even though it makes the same amount of power. The supercharged AND turbocharged version in the 2016 XC60 T6 is even better, although the torque steer in FWD models isn't very fun. AWD models of the XC60 T6 get the old turbocharged inline-6 engine, and while its fuel economy suffers compared to newer engines, this 300-horsepower powerplant will make you smile every time you have to pass someone on the freeway. The steering feels good in your hands, and the XC60's suspension is tuned with just the right amount of bite so that taking a corner briskly doesn't feel scary, but without any ride harshness.

DRIVE-E
We've driven a couple different Volvos with the new Drive-E engines, and they're for real. The Volvo XC60 T5 gets 24 mpg in the city, but with enough power to get from a standstill to 60 mph in just under seven seconds. And remember, the T5 is the "slow" one.

CITY SAFE
Volvo's City Safe system acts like an extra pair of eyes and feet. At speeds of 19 mph or less, the system detects stopped or slow-moving objects – cars or pedestrians – and automatically applies the brakes if the driver does not, avoiding or reducing the severity of accidents.

2016 Volvo XC60 Details
2016 Volvo XC60 photo Interior

The Volvo XC60 interior benefits from Swedish elegance. The dash includes an available TFT adaptable digital instrument cluster, allowing the driver to select different settings and colors. We love Volvo's clever ventilation control, which uses a seated human silhouette to indicate where you want airflow to go; tap the head for your upper body, legs for foot-wells, etc. The contrasting colors on the doors and seats are attractive, and the seats themselves are extremely comfortable, and perfect for long road trips. That is, once you've got the awkwardly placed lumbar support positioned better; the manual control is hard to operate.

Exterior
2016 Volvo XC60 photo

Volvo design has been sleek and stylish so long that we've nearly forgotten those old boxy shapes. The 2016 Volvo XC60 embodies that aesthetic, with a wonderfully graceful profile and proportions that keep looking good even if the basic shape has been on sale for nearly 10 years. It all hides a functional vehicle, though, with low roof rails to reduce wind noise, and an optional crossbar system to carry bikes, kayaks, skis and more. R-Design models eschew off-road ability for on-pavement performance, with stylish 20-inch wheels. Stick with non-R-Design models if you regularly churn through snow or mud.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The basic FWD 2015 Volvo XC60 T5 model comes with Volvo's new Drive-E 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder, an 8-speed Aisin automatic transmission, skidplates on the front and rear, the City Safety system, and a 5-year/50,000-mile warranty that includes complimentary factory scheduled maintenance for five years and five years of roadside assistance. The standard 2016 XC60 also comes with steering-wheel-mounted audio controls, power windows, Bluetooth phone and music interface, 18-inch wheels, a 160-watt, 8-speaker sound system, and a tilt/telescoping steering wheel. AWD models get the old 2.5-liter 5-cylinder (T5) or the turbocharged 3.0-liter 6-cylinder (T6), both with a 6-speed automatic transmission.

Optional Equipment

Safety features top the options list, with a Tech Package bundling things like, Lane Departure Warning, Collision Warning, Pedestrian and Cyclist Detection, Adaptive Cruise Control and the new Road Sign Information system, which can read important road signs approaching, displaying them on the driver-information screen. In-dash navigation, dual-screen rear-entertainment system, 12-speaker premium sound system, integrated rear child safety seats, panoramic roof with power sunshade, and a walnut steering wheel are available for the XC60. A Climate Package adds heated front and rear seats, windshield and steering wheel, while a Sport Package dresses up the appearance and stiffens the suspension.

Under the Hood

The base front-wheel-drive 2016 Volvo XC60 T5 comes with a turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder Drive-E engine making 240 horsepower; front-wheel-drive XC60 T6 models get a supercharged and turbocharged version that makes a solid 302 horsepower. Both Drive-E engines come connected to an 8-speed automatic transmission. The all-wheel-drive XC60 T5 uses the old-school 2.5-liter inline-5 with 250 horsepower, while the AWD XC60 T6 gets a turbocharged 3.0-liter inline 6-cylinder engine with 300 horsepower. R-Design models give a further boost to the turbo 6-cylinder, raising output to 325 horsepower. AWD XC60 models are mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission and can run on regular unleaded gasoline. Towing capacity for all models is limited to 3,300 pounds.

2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4 (FWD only)
240 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm
258 lb-ft of torque @ 1,500-4,800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 24/31 mpg

2.0-liter turbocharged and supercharged inline-4 (FWD only)
302 horsepower @ 5,700 rpm
295 lb-ft of torque @ 2,100-4,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 22/30 mpg

2.5-liter turbocharged inline-5 (AWD only)
250 horsepower @ 5,400 rpm
266 lb-ft of torque @ 1,800-4,200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 19/26 mpg

3.0-liter turbocharged inline-6 (AWD only)
300 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm
325 lb-ft of torque @ 2,100-4,200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/24 mpg

3.0-liter turbocharged inline-6 (AWD only)
325 horsepower @ 5,400-6,500 rpm
354 lb-ft of torque @ 3,000-3,600 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/24 mpg

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