Volvo S60: Volvo takes on BMW - Engine line-up

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  • New compact exec
  • On sale in July
  • Prices from £21,000
The engine range is not as extensive as those of German rivals that sell in bigger numbers, but it covers the gamut from tax-friendly to tearaway. By early next year, there'll be eight options, starting with a fuel-efficient, low-CO2 DRIVe unit (66mpg, less than 115g/km).

This is a 114bhp 1.6-litre diesel model with stop-start, brake energy recovery, a gearshift indicator, slippier aerodynamics and low-rolling-resistance tyres.

It's the only version with that kind of fuel-saving sorcery for now, but Volvo is promising impressive figures elsewhere in the range without it.

The S60 will include four new 1.6-litre and 2.0-litre direct-injection turbocharged petrol engines developed with Ford. Volvo calls them GTDI and they will deliver outputs of between 148bhp and 236bhp.

There'll also be a 158bhp, 53mpg 2.0-litre diesel and two all-Volvo units – a 202bhp five-cylinder 2.4-litre D5 diesel and six-cylinder 3.0-litre T6 petrol, which can now lay claim to just over 300bhp.

The T6 has all-wheel drive as standard, while it's an option with the D5.

Volvo claims to have shed some of the current S60's weight, despite a slight increase in size as well as more luxury and safety features. Every defensive feature in the Volvo catalogue, from a drowsy driver alert to blind-spot warnings in the mirrors, is there for the taking.

The new car's longer wheelbase means more rear legroom, and its wider boot opening makes loading easier. The rear seats' backrests lower at the touch of a lever located in the boot, and the front passenger seat partially tilts forwards to make way for extra-long loads.

If you need even more space, there'll be an estate – badged V60 – towards the end of the year, but it will be more of a lifestyle car than a hard grafter.

Volvo S60: Volvo takes on BMW - Chasing the BMW 3 series

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