In case you haven’t heard, Volvo has made a comeback. One of the key vehicles in the brand’s resurgence has been the XC90 3-row SUV, which debuted for the 2015 model year. All Volvo XC90s are powered by four-cylinder engines, but don’t let that deter you: These are stout, boosted engines that have more than enough power to move these large SUVs along without breaking a sweat. Those powertrains, the luxurious interior appointments and Volvo’s vaunted safety reputation have helped make the XC90 one of our favorite family choices. Here are five things to look for if you’re shopping the Volvo XC90.
Volvo’s Sensus touchscreen controls most major parts of the XC90’s infotainment system and is the central focus of the dash.
If you’ve ever used a tablet computer, you’ll be familiar with how Volvo’s Sensus touchscreen works in the XC90 SUV. This 9-inch infotainment screen controls features like radio stations and media, navigation, seat heating and climate control. It takes advantage of standard swipe/pinch gestures we’re all familiar with, and can also be used while wearing gloves.
Volvo’s XC90 Plug-In Hybrid gets a gasoline powertrain for the front wheels, while this electric motor/gearbox drives the rear wheels.
Plug-in Hybrid option
The Volvo XC90 T8 blends a turbocharged and supercharged (yes, both) four-cylinder engine with an electric motor. You can choose which mode the XC90 drives in – pure electric (up to the limit of the battery’s range), power mode which combines the gasoline engine and electric motor, or hybrid mode, which blends the gas engine and electric motor automatically depending on driving conditions. The XC90 Plug-in Hybrid is rated at 62 mpge.
The Volvo XC90 gets interior appointments befitting a far more expensive luxury vehicle.
If you haven’t been in a Volvo recently, you’ll be surprised when you climb inside: Volvo’s interiors, XC90 included, are gorgeous to the point they’d look at home in a Bentley or Rolls-Royce. There’s definitely a Scandanavian feel to the interior design, but it’s not sparse and utilitarian. For XC90 passengers, the second and third row seats are arranged at progressively higher points to give occupants a better view ahead, and the second row slides forward and back to customize the interior space for different passenger/cargo combinations.
The Volvo XC90 gets multiple active and passive safety features in keeping with the brand’s traditional focus.
Volvo’s legendary safety
In keeping with Volvo tradition, the XC90 SUV gets a framework of ultra high-strength boron steel to help keep occupants safe. High-tech electronic safety features are also present, including Volvo’s City Safety suite: This package gives the XC90 the ability to use radar and cameras to identify hazards like other vehicles, pedestrians, bikes and even large animals, and brake itself if you can’t react in time.
Of the XC90’s four trim levels, the R-Design is the more performance-oriented.
Multiple trim levels
In addition to the Volvo XC90 plug-in hybrid mentioned earlier, Volvo offers the XC90 SUV in four trim levels starting with Momentum at $47,700. Step up to R-Design for a more sporty motif inside and out or the Inscription trim, which moves the XC90 in a more luxurious direction. Finally, for those who want everything, there’s the Volvo XC90 Excellence; be prepared to pay for it, though…Excellence models run $105,000.
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