This 2017 Volvo V60 doesn’t get the sweet interior upgrade like the new S90 or XC90, and instantly, I thought it looked dated. It still has the phone-type buttons in the middle. The rest of the dash looks a little weak, too, but that’s probably because the updated Volvos look so good.
Volvo has updated the powertrain, though, and it works well. Its 240 hp is plenty to move this car around at a brisk pace, the eight-speed transmission is quick — even quicker in sport mode — and the brakes have a good mechanical feel.
The steering is above average, too. It’s direct and takes a medium effort, though that effort is adjustable through the menu screens. This wagon feels planted, heavy even, during lane changes and surefooted when on the throttle. The suspension is stiff enough to be enjoyable, but it doesn’t bang over road imperfections. The cabin is quiet and calm. It feels cocoon-ish. Would a few extra horses be cool? Of course they would, but we have the Polestar version for that. I do love that Polestar blue, too.
Anyway, the exterior is sharp no matter the color, and once Volvo updates the interior, this will be back atop the wagon test-drive list — though it’s a pretty short list these days.
–Jake Lingeman, road test editor
I like a lot of what Volvo’s done lately, but the V60 doesn’t make that list. It feels a generation old (for good reason), and even with the updated powertrain, it still doesn’t have the smoothness or refinement of something like an Audi A4 Allroad, my current go-to in luxury wagons. Still, there’s good interior room, and Volvo’s seats belong in every car on earth — they’re supportive yet cushy in a way no one else quite manages. But for $50K-plus, you’d really have to be a Volvo wagon slappy to seek one of these out. Volvo knows it too — they don’t expect this to be a huge seller, so the fact they continue to offer it here says a lot about how the company respects its traditional buyers.
In this SUV-crazed world it’s refreshing to get into a station wagon, and congrats to Audi (and Mercedes and Volvo, and possibly Buick) for believing there’s still some market left. An …
This might be contrarian, but I enjoy the button-heavy classic Volvo interior inside this V60. Sure, the big touchscreen in current-gen Swede machines is cool and desirable to many, but I find it to be convoluted at times. You won’t run into that in the V60: If there’s a feature, there’s a button for it. That did make using navigation a headache at times, but with more time behind the wheel, it wouldn’t be an issue.
The 240-hp I4 is surprisingly punchy and will carry you away briskly into the night. Power delivery is on the peaky side of things, so look forward to being squashed into your seat by a whoosh of turbocharged air when you’re not necessarily expecting it.
As Jake mentioned, the steering is surprisingly good. I found myself shocked by how well this wagon handled. While it might not be as luxurious as the Audi Allroad, it’s still a pleasure to drive.
–Wes Wren, associate editor
Options: Platinum package with premium audio, active dual-xenon headlights, accent lighting, auto-dimming rearview mirror, convenience package, keyless drive, rear park assist, garage door opener, technology package including adaptive cruise control and queue assist, collision warning with full auto brake, pedestrian detection, distance alert, driver alert control, lane keeping, road sign information, active high beams ($3,650); Climate package with heated seats, power child locks, outboard two-stage booster seats, interior air quality system, heated windshield washer nozzle, heated steering wheel, heated windshield ($1,550); Blind spot information systems package with indicators and front and rear park assist ($925); 19-inch wheels ($750); metallic paint ($560)