Swedish carmaker Volvo is renowned for its safety features. Infact they have invented most of the safety features that we see on today’s modern cars. The Premium carmaker in India has been selling their car models for long now and now they are all set to get their latest Premium Sedan the S60 into India. We have driven the upcoming car model and read on to know all on the latest smartest Swede in town.
Food for Thought
Volvo introduced the 1st generation of the S60 in 2000 which replaced the S70 then, while the 2nd generation was launched in 2010. Currently the S60 is in its 3rd generation. The S60 is built at the Volvo factory in Ridgeville, South Carolina making this the 1st Volvo car model to be Made in the USA. Volvo is very well known for its safety innovations which include inventing the Three Point safety belt, side impact protection, whiplash protection, city safety, auto brake, rollover protection, inflatable curtain and lots of more features.
First things first the older S60 used the Ford-based P3 platform this new third-generation S60 uses Volvo’s modular SPA platform. Well if you have seen the older S60 then you will instantly know that the latest generation is a totally revelation in terms of exterior styling. The S60 looks a lot like its bigger sibling the S90 sedan in many ways. The front gets the wide Volvo family grille that gets a thick chrome band that runs around and also gets 20 vertical slats that style it up along with the large Iron Mark Volvo logo looking handsomely placed. The headlamps come with the now synonyms Thor’s Hammer DRL in them while the headlights getting all LED glow in them with LED Active High-beam system. The front bumper gets sharp lines that define it and round white glow projector fog lamps placed around black inserts and a dash of chrome. The air dam in black also adds some more glamour to the low slung front end of the S60. The bonnet is large in size and is defined by the two character lines that sharply run backwards towards the windshield.
Coming to the sides the S60 looks very smart here with its neatly styled fenders that get this unique stamping running on them that hug the 235/45 R18 tyres mounted on unique looking black diamond alloys. The large wing mirrors are mounted on the doors while the glass area also gets a chrome belt line right till the kink on the C pillar. The side profile is further highlighted with the sloping roofline that adds to the S 60s sporty appeal. The doors also get a sharp character line that runs backwards creating some drama on the sides. The roof area gets a large shark-fin antenna and a panoramic sun roof on the package. Yes the side profile does remind of the BMW 3-Series to an extent but the similarities end with the unique styling of the boot area on the S60.
Coming to the rear profile this is the best angle to view the smart looking sedan. The boot lid comes with typical VOLVO badging in bold chrome while the highlight of the boot area is the S90 like LED tail lights very neatly flushed into the bodyline. This tail lights gets the super cool looking ‘E’ type LED glow. While the bootlid gets S60 and T4 badges. The rear bumper gets slim reflectors while the lower section is unpainted and also houses the wide styled quad exhausts with chrome ending. All in all the Volvo S60 is one hell of a head turner with tons of road presence.
Step inside the S60 and you are welcomed into a dark themed cabin area. The styling is typical Volvo like as seen on the V60 and others. The flat styled dashboard is made of soft rubbery material like other premium cars but also gets a hand stitch lining to enhance the styling. You also get real wood inserts along with chrome strips on the dash area which gives a very good feel when touched. The steering is a three spoke designed unit with leather wrapping and metal inserts around the MFD buttons on it. Manual adjust for height and reach is available on this steering. The AC vents get glossy black inserts around them along with neat looking metal shut knobs that have a very satisfying feel to them when used. The instrument cluster is a 12 inch colour display screen that reads out all the vital tell tale lights, speedo and RPM etc in a crisp and clear fashion.
The highlight of the dash is the 9 inch AVN touch-screen unit that is placed vertically. This display has all the connectivity options that one needs, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Bluetooth connectivity etc. The display quality is very crisp and there is no lag experienced which means the unit uses a fast processor. Only thing against this display screen is that when connected to Apple CarPlay or Android Auto is that as the screen is placed vertically the display gets cramped as compared to a regularly placed display in landscape mode. This display also doubles up as the control screen for controlling the settings for all the safety features on the car and also to control the 4 zone Climate control. And yes the S60 also comes with a 14 speaker 600W Harman Kardon Premium sound system which includes a air ventilated sub woofer placed on the dashboard. Sound quality is flawless and feels extra premium. The speakers in the door pads also get premium looking grills with Harman branding on them.
The center console gets the unique real wood finish on the sliding compartment along with a wireless charger and loads of storage options. The automatic shifter has a manual shift pattern one with typical Volvo design and styling on it. Also placed here is the unique Volvo styled engine start/stop knob in metal finish that needs to be twisted to start or stop the engine. You also get the preset drive mode control roll type control unit again finished in chrome, besides that is the electro mechanical hand brake button, auto hold button ahead of the closeable storage cabin that also doubles up as the armrest.
The seats on all Volvos have always been very uniquely designed and if we believe rumors we are told the seats are designed by orthopedics. On the S60 the trademark Volvo seats in all leather that offer unmatched comfort, under thigh support, back support. Needless to say both the front seats are totally electrically adjustable which also includes under thigh extended support and memory seat settings. There is good amount of shoulder room and leg room in the front. At the rear seating space is easily the best in class with tons of leg room, knee room which is best in class and good head room. Rear seating is best suited for two due to the raised central tunnel which won’t allow the third passenger here. Rear passengers also get dual climate control with fan speed setting too.
The Volvo S60 gets a boot capacity of 391 liters which is fairly ok and can accommodate 3 bags easily. The cabin feels very premium and well appointed. Everything oozes marksmanship and has a very satisfying feel. Comfort level is extra high and the overall feel inside the cabin is very positive.
Engine – Transmission – Drive
The Volvo S60 will be available in India in the T4 trim and powered with the Petrol engine only. This is a 2.0L (1969cc) 4-cylinder engine that makes 190hp of power and 300Nm of peak torque. This engine comes mated to the 8-speed automatic transmission. Power is delivered to the front wheel. This is the same engine that also powers other Volvo models.
You need to twist the engine start knob to start the S60. Once on the move you feel the 190 horses let loose with good power delivery and loads of drivability. The gear shifts are pretty smooth and unnoticed. The steering feel very well weighted at all speeds and you even have the Adaptive drive modes to choose from that alter the power and drive feel to a large extent. What makes the drive feel even better is the suspension set up that uses double wishbone in the front and a unique integrally-linked rear axle. The S60 also gets Dynamic Chassis technology that offers a good balance between suspension comfort & road handling as we experienced.
The S60 is fun to drive though it does not have that rear wheel drive that the Germans have but never the less this engine has loads of power under its belt. The car feels effortless to drive and has loads of punch in its power delivery. The Engine feels very well tuned for some aggressive driving if needed. The steering feels well weighted while the comfort level on the go is pretty premium. You have this unique feeling in your mind while driving the S60 that you gonna be safe and secure, which is its key USP and rightly so with so much safety features loaded into the kitty.
The Volvo S60 comes loaded with tons of safety system which is so typically Volvo and becomes its key USP. You get advanced safety features like Oncoming mitigation with auto braking, intelligent adaptive cruise control, Oncoming lane mitigation, Lane keeping aid, Run-off road mitigation, City safety. Apart from this you also get front airbags, side impact airbags, curtain airbags, whiplash protection, Isofix mounts, emergency brake assist to name a few.
The Volvo S60 comes into India in its latest form, the car now looks outstandingly pretty, has all the trademark Volvo safety features, powered by a competent petrol engine that drives well and does its job nicely. Rear seat comfort is the S60s hallmark that unseen in this segment. Why would you choose the S60? Well because its different from the crowd and is the best way to stand out from the others.
Words – Ritesh Madhok
Photography & Video – Govind Gadekar