For private cash buyers, opting for a manual XC60 rather than an automatic saves you around £1500 – so not much for a car in this price bracket.
Similarly, CO2 emissions in the manual may be lower, but its benefit-in-kind percentage is only lower than the automatic by 1%, so company car tax bills won’t be dramatically cheaper. Claimed fuel economy, meanwhile, is 53.3mpg in the manual compared with 51.4mpg in the automatic; again, a small difference which'll only decrease in the real world.
With precious little disparity in the pace on offer as well, a lot of this will come down to personal preference. On balance we’d say the automatic is the better option: it’s a slick, more relaxing unit for not much more money.
Ultimately, though, we'd recommend looking at an Audi Q5 first. It doesn’t have a manual option, but it’s even higher quality inside, is more refined, handles better and has a bigger boot.
What Car? says...
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Volvo XC60 D4 R-Design Manual
Price £38,155 Engine 4cyl, 1969cc, diesel Power 188bhp at 4250rpm Torque 295lb ft at 1750-2500rpm Gearbox 6-spd manual 0-62mph 8.8sec Top speed 127mph Official economy 52.3mpg CO2, tax band 142g/km, 30%
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