The new Volvo XC60 R Design is a nice mover


The new Volvo XC60 R Design is a nice mover

Volvo have produced a stunning looking, high tech SUV that boasts the very latest in automotive technology and all wrapped up in a very high quality, beautifully screwed together package.

Available with either a manual or 8-speed auto with the option of front wheel drive or all-wheel drive the new XC60 will have a broad appeal.

This week I am road testing the new Volvo XC60 D5 AWD R Design Geartronic.

So has it got any street Cred?

The new XC60 is an imposing looking SUV with bold lines and a very attractive and distinctive style. So it stands out from its Teutonic counterparts. So yes it has serious street cred!

So what’s it like inside?

The cabin is quite simply a work of art. It looks more designer bespoke than a mass produced vehicle, from the beautiful stitching in the soft leather, to judicious use of aluminium and piano black trim it looks more like the inside of a car costing three times as much.

In addition the huge central portrait touchscreen which allows the driver to operate a host of functions, from audio, climate, navigation, reversing camera and so forth to the perfectly milled chrome switches and the neat chrome starter switch all go to create that truly exclusive feel.

What’s more the functionality and ease of use of the menu’s within the screen are an example to all those over complicated systems I see elsewhere!

The standard specification is vast and too numerous to detail here, but items such as “Pilot assist” City safe with autobrake, Pedestrian, cyclist and large animal detection, with auto brake, as well as radar that senses an impending rear end impact and tightens the seat belts accordingly, road sign recognition, active cruise control, lane assist , Head Up Display, Drive Modes settings, “Clean Zone” Air quality system with pollen filters, and much more complete the comprehensive package.

Really it beats all its rivals here, with huge levels of active and passive safety. The safety package as you would expect of Volvo is immense and most impressive.

With a truly sumptuous cabin, vast amounts of legroom and a decent boot/load area its a a luxury SUV that has real poise and grace.

What’s under the bonnet?

This version is Powered by the D5 235PS diesel mated to a lovely auto 8-speed “Geartronic” gearbox.

It certainly feels lively, with bags of mid range torque. It is smooth and refined and proves frugal too burning just 7.4 litres of diesel per 100km over my 800km road test in variety of road conditions. Road tax is €390.00 for the year.

So What's it like to drive?

Supremely refined, with punchy acceleration and safe secure handling.

I really enjoyed the overall driving experience. Every time I hopped inside, the fit and feel of everything, and the way it manages to gobble up long distances in complete comfort and safety makes this one of the most appealing luxury SUV’s on the market.

So what’s the final verdict?

The new Volvo XC60 is in my opinion one of the very best SUV’s you can buy. Its stylish in a non brash sort of way, which I like. It really feels more bespoke than mass produced and with the variety of option packs you can “build your own Volvo.” I loved the new XC60 D5 AWD R Design and every Kilometre behind the wheel was a pleasure.The XC60 D5 starts at €53,950. The D5 R Design AWD as tested costs €70,062.