Wednesday, 25 May 2022

For people seeking a three-row luxury vehicle, but who also want some eco-friendly options, the number of choices is limited but growing. One of the luxury brands that has been a leader in terms of green SUVs has been Volvo, whose offerings include the 2021 XC90 Recharge plug-in hybrid.

Going up against competitors from Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, LIncoln and more is a tall task, but Volvo holds its own.

I recently spent some time in a 2021 XC90 Recharge, and below is a full report on my experience.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

Luxury automakers have embraced the plug-in hybrid at various levels, but one of the automakers going in full steam in this category is Volvo, which already offers a plethora of plug-in hybrids to the public and is eagerly moving toward an all-Electric Vehicle future.

One of the plug-in hybrids that is currently available from Volvo is the S90 Recharge, a large sedan that is pricey, yet fills the needs of any demanding luxury car customer. It embraces the future while maintaining the cushy and comfortable environment these buyers expect. I recently spent some time in an S90 Recharge, and I’m back with a full report.

LOOKS

There are different ways to approach luxury design. Some automakers are more flashy, but others take a more nuanced approach.

Volvo falls in the second category. Unlike the massive, dominating grille on new Lexus models, for example, the Volvo has a classy and minimalist design on the front end of the S90. You still sense luxury, but it’s not slapping you in the face.

Published in CAR REVIEWS

While the charge toward electrification of the vehicles we buy continues, some brands are taking the challenge more seriously than others.

Among the brands most dedicated to this incoming change, and leading the charge (no pun intended), is Volvo. The company has a lofty goal of having fully electric vehicles comprising 50 percent of its sales by 2025, and already offers all of its new models in some form of hybrid or electric model.

Volvo has the difficult task of maintaining the strong driving experience that Volvos tend to offer, while adapting to this new eco-friendly environment. I recently tested a 2021 Volvo XC60 Recharge, the plug-in hybrid version of their mid-size SUV, and I’m back with a full report on whether it lives up to these expectations.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

There’s a lot to like about a good wagon. Even in an era when the majority of buyers prefer SUV and crossovers, a wagon can still offer you the level of storage space an SUV can, while offering a less bulky frame and easier entry and access to materials. 

Throw in a bit of luxury, and you have the 2021 Volvo V90, a stylish and well-designed wagon that is one of few vehicles keeping the luxury wagon segment alive. (Benz and Audi have some offerings, and Volvo also offers the smaller V60)

I can’t stress enough that these are not your 1970s or 1980s wood-paneled type of wagons either. For one, they don’t have the rear-facing “wayback” seat (though that would be a pretty cool thing for someone to bring back). But these high-end wagons are also now high-tech, beautiful machines that rival anything on the roadways.

I recently spent some time in a 2021 V90, and I’m back with a full report.

Published in CAR REVIEWS

For a newer vehicle to succeed, it must check multiple boxes.

For the 2020 Volvo XC40, one of those boxes is filling the demand on the smaller end of the SUV scale, a segment for which demand has grown tremendously in the past handful of years.

The other key box it checks is that, like all Volvo offerings, it offers an extremely impressive amount of safety features to luxury car buyers.

But in a crowded category with plenty of excellent offerings from multiple leading brands, is it enough to stand out? Read on for a full review.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

 

As the inevitable, industry-wide move toward eco-friendly cars continues, all brands and all segments are getting into the green mode with more hybrids and electric offerings.

Volvo is on this bandwagon too, offering two SUVs in plug-in hybrid modes: The XC60 (mid-size) and XC90 (full-size).

I recently drove a 2020 Volvo XC90 hybrid and I’m back with a full report on what it has to offer for luxury buyers seeking the best high-end but environmentally friendly vehicle.

LOOKS
The XC90 hybrid I tested featured seating for 6 passengers, but you can also opt for a 7-seat version. Be aware though, that the third row is pretty small, and not for adults.

It features an attractive and comfortable interior that all families will enjoy. From the sharp wood inlays that accent the design, to the high quality materials used throughout the vehicle, there is nothing that isn't high end in this vehicle. And most importantly, it’s quite roomy and has excellent storage options and versatility.

The exterior design is also very sharp with Volvo's unique, shapely and bold design that is generally eye-catching. The wheels are another visual standout.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

The luxury sport sedan segment is one of the most brutal in the business. Featuring strong entries from everyone from Audi and BMW to Mercedes-Benz and Genesis, success in this field requires a near-perfect effort from rival automakers.

Volvo’s entry in this category, the S60, manages to shine despite the prominent foes it is facing. I recently tested a 2020 Volvo S60 and I’m back with a full report on what stands out.

LOOKS
After a strong redesign for 2019, the look of the S60 carries over for the 2020 model.

The exterior design of the S60 is simple and elegant, yet also smooth and eye-catching, with a low design and nice side lines. It stands out in a segment known for good-looking rides.

Moving inside, Volvo really nails the luxury look and feel that’s needed to succeed in this segment. The Nappa leather seats are incredibly plush and comfortable, even on longer trips.

The R-Design trim level that I tested featured standard four-zone climate control, interior lighting and a tailored dashboard. For 2020, a virtual instrument panel is now standard for all models.

Among other features that boost the luxury in the S60 include a panoramic moonroof with power sunshade, leather steering wheel and gear shift knob, auto dimming interior & exterior mirrors and metal mesh aluminum inlays.

Published in CAR REVIEWS

 

 

Volvo’s entry in the compact luxury SUV category, the XC60, is battling for buyers among the giants of the luxury world — from Acura and Audi to Benz and BMW — so the task it faces in finding an audience can be daunting.

The 2020 model maintains the look from the 2018 redesign, but the good news is this is still among the best-looking and top-performing vehicles in the class. 

Read on for my full take on how it measures up in the segment.

LOOKS
The 2020 Volvo XC60 features a unique and well-designed exterior for a luxury SUV, especially in the rear of the vehicle. Volvo doesn’t blend in with the crowd like so many competitors do.

Inside, the XC60 is extra comfy and well put-together. The brand isn’t the first nameplate most people think of when the term luxury is mentioned, but anyone who has sat in a Volvo in recent years knows that it should be top of mind.

Attractive driftwood touches highlight the front dashboard, and extremely cozy and warm Nappa Leather seating will support you even on longer rides. The XC60 makes you feel at home, like a luxury model should.

Second row seating is roomy compared to other options in the segment, and the driver and front passenger will be very comfortable.

Quality features available on the XC60 include a Panoramic Moonroof w/Power Sunshade, Keyless Entry w/ Hands Free Tailgate Opening, Rear Park Assist Camera, 4-Zone Automatic Climate Control, Heated Wiper blades with Integrated Washers, and heated rear and front seats.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

The station wagon, once the vehicle most associated with family excursions, is arguably the most overlooked class of vehicles available today.

It doesn’t help that so few wagons are being produced (they make up only 1.4 percent of U.S. auto sales), and the biggest factor in this trend is the 500 SUVs and crossovers that dominate family vehicle buying these days.

But for folks who have SUV fatigue and want some alternative options, a few brands are still in the wagon business. In the luxury realm, the most notable player is Volvo, who offers a couple wagon options in the V90 and V60.

I recently tested a Volvo V60, which was redesigned for the 2019 model year, and I’m back with a full report on what it offers.

Published in CAR REVIEWS

Every automaker has its niche. For some it’s power. Others are known for smooth handling. And some have a reputation of being reliable.

When it comes to the Volvo lineup, what comes to most people’s minds is their dedication to safety and technology, areas where Volvo has been an industry trailblazer for many years — and it’s a reputation they strive hard to maintain. 

They are also among the automakers leading the push for changes in the auto industry, with recent announcements about fully-electric vehicles and a pledge to help combat climate change by going carbon neutral.

I recently spent some time in a 2019 Volvo XC90 — the Swedish automaker’s three-row SUV — and I’m back with a full report.


LOOKS

Let’s get the superficial out of the way, and just say that the XC90 has a high-class design, in and out.

In addition to being focused on safety and a green approach, we must not forget that Volvo is a luxury brand. And you’ll immediately recognize that.

The XC90’s exterior has a unique Volvo design, especially up front and in rear. It’s one of the few brands you really can’t mix up with its competitors, even in an era of similar vehicles in many segments — a testament to Volvo’s originality.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS
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