What is it?
Given half a chance, Volvo will tell you what the new V60 is not. Apparently, it isn't an estate car, despite the fact that it's an estate-shaped version of the S60 saloon, which is designed to be more practical. Instead, Volvo is going with the phrase 'Sports Wagon' to describe the V60, and it says it's the coupe-like roofline that marks the difference.
Whatever it is, don't expect a massive boot. It's a reasonable size at 430 litres, but that's only 13 litres bigger than the capacity you get in the V50, which is a much smaller car. Crucially, though, it's also less space than you get in the rival 'lifestyle' estates from Audi and BMW.
However, while the Volvo's boot might not be huge, it's a usefully square-sided shape, and there's more storage space underneath the floor. The space is flexible, too. The rear-seat backrest splits 40-20-40, and each section folds down perfectly flat with no need to pop the bases out of the way first. The front passenger seat also folds far enough forward to be perfectly flat, which helps you accommodate longer loads.
The cabin is welcoming for passengers, too, with lots of space, comfortable seats and a high-quality feel. Being a Volvo, you also get bags of safety kit as standard. This includes City Safety, which can sense a slower-moving car ahead, and automatically apply the brakes if you get too close.
What's it like to drive?
Volvo's plan for the V60 was to make it more practical than the S60 saloon without compromising the driving characteristics. It's no surprise, then, that the two feel remarkably similar on the open road.
The ride is a little on the firm side, and although it stays comfortable most of the time, potholes and drain covers can thud into the cabin. The pay-off for this, though, is that body movements are tightly controlled, so the body stays reassuringly stable through bends. There's plenty of grip, too.
Our reviews are based on hard data and thorough testing in the real world.
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