The Volvo XC60 is due for an update this year. Current generation owner, Tsebiso Mkhwanazi, shares his thoughts on his Volvo XC60.*
The Volvo XC60 is a medium sized premium SUV competing with the likes of Audi Q5, Mercedes Benz GLC and BMW X3. The XC60 was launched in 2008 and received a facelift towards the end of 2013. Like a certain politician in South Africa, the car is on its way out. Like that unnamed politician – whose last name starts with the letter Z, the XC60 has eaten noticeable chunks off the lunch of the establishment. This is as far as the comparison goes, before the wrong impression is created.
The current XC60 looks good outside and has presence. The trapezoidal exhaust pipes at each corner, strong shoulder lines, the day time running lights and chrome in all the right places make it look the part. The inside is awash with soft touch material and everything is of a high quality. The seats are, in keeping with Volvo tradition, very comfortable. The infotainment screen is utilitarian, although on the small side, and not touchscreen. The speedometer is digital and the car gives you a choice to change the display between sports, eco or elegant themes. In reality the only useful themes are sport and eco – although they do not change the way the car behaves.
The XC60 has four cup-holders, two in the front and two in the back, talk about equality bathong. The boot is spacious, at 650l with rear seats up, it is in line with the competition. You can comfortably fit a stroller, a pram and three brothers trying to leave the country in there. Head and shoulder room are quite good, in the front and the back. The interface has many buttons but as an owner I am used to it and find it simple to use whilst driving. I am a fan of the space behind the radio where you can hide valuables from the infamous smash-and-grabbing professionals.
My D4 has 140 kW of power and 400 Nm of torque. Off the line, there is noticeable turbo-lag from the diesel motor. Once it gets going, the sensation is endearing. Maybe the Polestar upgrade (known in the streets as “The Way the Engine Should Have Been Configured From The Factory”) makes a noticeable difference to the lag. My experience with most big cars is that you can’t sense how fast it’s going. You only become aware when a “speed-kop” jumps out the bushes to pull you over. Now, and endearingly, with the XC60 you feel the speed building up. It is not very sporty but a somewhat sporty quality is that it shows little body roll when making corners at high speeds.
The fuel consumption is claimed at an average of 4.7 litres for every 100km. My experience has been about 10l per 100km in mostly town driving. Highway driving, I have seen the fuel gage reach below 5l. Maybe (metaphoric maybe) I am lead footed because even in the other Volvo in the garage, a V40, I only ever make the claimed fuel consumption when I am on the highway.
The XC60 is a solid and reliable car. It satisfies in many ways. The luxury car market is very competitive and the fact that the XC60 sells so well is an outcome of its strengths. In fact, the Volvo engine in my experience is many times better than the equivalent Mercedes diesel engine. The engine noise is not intrusive and it tows with gusto and ease. The XC60 is due for replacement as most people know. The biggest visible changes are in the infotainment screen, which is bigger and touchscreen, the grill and lights and as usual, the car is bigger but lighter. It can only get better.
*TALK TO US…
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