In this edition of Stu’s reviews I’m going to be looking at a type of car which I haven’t had the chance to review yet – the family focused crossover. This takes the form of the Volvo XC60 which is a car that is getting a lot of attention at the moment.
I was able to get 2 days use out of a demonstration model from one of our approved dealers; so I thoroughly tested the vehicle and got a real feel for its capabilities. As I don’t have a family myself I can’t comment on the practicalities of doing school runs and day trips in an XC60. Therefore this review is more focused on the technical abilities of the car and how I judge it from an aesthetic point of view.
The appearance of Volvo’s cars has taken a dramatic turn in recent times; taking the brand from a pipe and slippers image to more of a smart professional look. The box-shaped practical car which used to be synonymous with this manufacturer is gone (and good riddance). Sharper lines, more body curves and a technically on-trend interior now make up the image of the Volvo brand.
Looking at the XC60 specifically it’s one of the smaller crossovers on the market and it doesn’t sit too highly off the road. I personally prefer this as it keeps the humbleness of a real family car compared to some of the “faux by fours” you commonly see these days. The shape of the car still holds that classic crossover look though with the elongated lines and a slight downward pointing tilt from back to front.
A tidy front grille and matte alloy wheels keep things interesting without going too far down the sporty look. Overall the XC60 is attractive but not too flash; I’d definitely consider including metallic paint however as it really helps bring the bodywork to life.
Space is the biggest selling point inside this car, it is roomy despite the car not being gargantuan from an external point of view. Volvo has made sure that passengers aren’t cramped at all, both up front and in the back. This is something which is always welcome on long family road trips or business journeys with multiple passengers.
Behind the wheel the setup is ideal. An adjustable steering column means that you can easily find a driving position which is natural to you. A little adjustment was necessary for me (very easy to do) and I was ready for the road. Looking at the dashboard it includes everything you would expect from a car of this class. Air conditioning, cruise control, a digital radio and a host of media plug-in options also make it a fairly tech-savvy car.
I think the seating does fairly well at finding a balance between high-end style and practicality. Obviously with children present you don’t want anything too delicate or damageable, but at the same time you don’t want wipe down plastic chairs. Volvo has found a good balance in the middle here; as the seating is hard wearing but still looks fairly professional.
If I’m to sum up the handling in one word it would be ‘smooth’. This car seems to glide across the road, especially when traveling at higher speeds. It was mostly city driving that I did in the XC60, however I did take it out on the motorway once and it really came into its element. For this reason I’d recommend the Volvo XC60 for those who regularly make long commutes or travel around on business. There’s nothing worse than a rough connection to the road or loud background noise when traveling over long distances.
If you are overly concerned about background noise though paying attention to the engine size is key. I tested our a four cylinder diesel engine which was quiet enough, however I get the feeling that moving up to a five cylinder might bring in a bit of extra noise. Acceleration is powerful as the 2.0L engine packs plenty of punch. Perfect for if you’re late for a meeting or the slept through an alarm. Although the main selling point of this vehicle is its gentle and smooth handling over longer distances, it can pull out the stops when you need it to.
The economy is respectable considering the size of the engine. According to the manufacturer, the fuel economy under normal driving conditions is 62.8mpg. I didn’t have to refuel in my 2 days in the car, but with diesel in the tank and a smooth running engine I can see you getting good value out of your fuel with this model.
If you’re potentially interested in leasing this car take a look at our latest Volvo XC60 lease rates to get started.
About Stu – Stuart Law is a business development executive at Intelligent Car Leasing. He helps customers maximise their car budget, negotiate better terms with funders and get the best leasing deals possible.
To speak to Stu or any other of our staff about getting a competitive leasing deal call ICL on 0844 387 2727.
Categories : Car Product News/Reviews