VOLVO S60 REVIEW
VEHICLE STYLE: Sedan
Engine: 2.4 litre twin-turbo diesel in-line five
Outputs: 151kW / 420Nm
Transmission: 6-speed tiptronic automatic (AWD)
Official fuel efficiency: 7.1 l/100km
On test fuel efficiency: 10.9 l/100km (hard driving)
CO2 emissions: 189 g/km
The all-new S60 is a significant advance for Volvo, not just in design, but in quality, safety, performance and value.
The S60 D5 sits in the middle of the line-up, and is the sole diesel option.
- Quality: The cabin is furnished in very high-grade materials that feel and look great. Leather upholstery is standard with three trim choices.
- Comfort: The electric driver's seat is comfortable, however front seats lack lateral support in the squab. The rear seats have good legroom and headroom, but the sloping C-pillar makes entry and exit tight.
- Equipment: Cruise control, trip computer, dual-zone climate control, Bluetooth, USB audio input, rain-sensing wipers, rear parking sensors and an auto-dimming rear vision mirror are all standard on the D5. A spare tyre is not available, with only a can of ‘goo’ - temporary sealer - provided.
- Storage: There's 380 litres of boot space with the seatbacks raised, expanding significantly with the 60/40 split rear seats folded flat. The front passenger seatback folds to accommodate longer items; there’s also a flip-up cargo barrier in the boot floor.
ON THE ROAD
- Driveability: With strong low and mid-range torque, the D5's responsive diesel engine makes light work of urban driving. The six-speed auto makes the most of the D5's torque curve, shifting early and keeping revs low. Tiptronic mode gives the driver some extra control during spirited driving.
- Refinement: In typical Volvo fashion, everything has a solid feel and, during our test, remained rattle-free. The cabin is serene at speed with little road noise intruding, but there is some wind noise from the base of the A-pillar.
- Suspension: Fitted with the standard Dynamic Chassis suspension, the S60 D5 provides a good ride over large undulations, with safe, predictable handling and good steering weight. However, it fidgets a little over smaller bumps and corrugations.
- Braking: Brake feel from the all-disc system is smooth and progressive, although very hard use can see some fade on downhill runs.
- ANCAP rating: The new Volvo S60 has yet to be tested by ANCAP or Euro NCAP.
- Safety features: ABS, EBD, two-stage stability control and traction control are standard, along with Volvo's City Safety anti-collision system. Front-seat passengers get dual front and side airbags, and full-length curtain airbags protect both the front and rear seats.
WARRANTY AND SERVICING
- Warranty: All new Volvo cars are sold with a three-year/unlimited kilometre warranty.
- Service costs are not provided by Volvo Australia. Before purchase, check with your Volvo dealer.
HOW IT COMPARES | VALUE FOR MONEY
- Lexus IS 250 ($55,800) - It's slightly cheaper than the S60 and has the dynamic advantage of RWD, but the IS 250's rear cabin is cramped and the model is well into its twilight years. (click for IS reviews)
- Audi A4 2.7 TDI ($69,300) - Similarly sized and with equal levels of quality, the A4 2.7 TDI nevertheless has 70Nm less than the S60 D5 and costs almost $12,000 more.
- BMW 320d Sedan automatic ($59,100) - BMW's small sedan has the best on-road dynamics in the segment, but a lengthy options list can see its sticker price skyrocket. (click for 3 Series reviews)
TMR VERDICT | OVERALL
Built like a vault and with exceptional levels of safety equipment, the 2011 Volvo S60 D5 also boasts a solid powertrain and a comfortable cabin, front and rear – a rare thing in the medium luxury sedan segment.
It's also finely crafted and a competent handler, making the all-new S60 D5 a great all-rounder. The value it represents is exceptional, and it deserves to sell well.