The Volvo XC90 is, quite simply, the safest new car on sale in Britain. We awarded it with our inaugural Safety Award at this year's What Car? Awards. It also earned a five star overall rating in our road test.
Like other large SUVs, such as the BMW X5, Mercedes-Benz GLE, Audi Q7 and Land Rover Discovery Sport, the Volvo XC90 offers the high driving position, luxurious interior and family friendly practicality which SUV buyers love. Costing from £46,850, it might be one of the more expensive SUVs around, but it's also one of the best.
So, why does the Volvo XC90 deserve to be on your driveway? Read on to find out.
7 reasons to buy a Volvo XC90
7. Hybrid power
Opt for the petrol-electric hybrid version of the XC90 - badged as the T8 - and you can travel for up to 24 miles on electric power alone. That's perfect if you're travelling into cities like London, where it will be exempt from the congestion charge.
6. Comfortable inside
There's plenty of adjustment for the driver's seat and steering wheel, meaning you can easily get comfortable. The pedals are nicely placed, too, making the XC90 comfortable for long drives.
5. Genuine seven-seater
Most SUVs which claim to have seven seats will often leave third-row occupants feeling cheated for space, and while the XC90's rearmost seats aren't the biggest, they'll be fine for smaller adults, particularly on shorter journeys.
4. High rider
The XC90's tall seating position and large windows mean that it's easy to see out of, but parking sensors and a multitude of cameras are also available, as is a semi-autonomous parking assistant.
3. Big, practical boot
The XC90 comes with one of the biggest boots in the large SUV market, and can take a full complement of luggage with no trouble. If you do need more space, the five rear seats can be moved around or folded away.
2. Loaded with kit
The reason why we recommend the entry-level Momentum version of the XC90 is because it has everything you'd want - cruise control, leather seats, parking sensors, satellite navigation and climate control are all standard.
1. Safety as standard
City braking technology, road sign recognition and six airbags are standard on every XC90, and optional equipment includes a blind spot monitoring system. There's also a five-star Euro NCAP safety rating to consider.
What about buying used?
The previous Volvo XC90 was launched back in 2002, so by the time it came up for replacement last year, it was beginning to show its age inside and out. That said, it still makes sense for families, with a comfortable interior, supportive seats and a good range of safety equipment.
A budget of around £2500 will get you an early diesel example with high mileage, but prices rise sharply from there. A late 2013 2.4-litre D5 model - our favourite version of the old XC90 - will cost around £20,000, while high-specification cars built just before the old XC90 went off sale can cost you up to £32,000.
Remember, too, that the XC90 is a large car, and that means you won't be able to run one on a tight budget. It's a complex car and, although problems are rare on cars which have covered less than 100,000 miles, the XC90 does get through consumables like brake fluid and bulbs quicker than other cars in this class.
One issue to be aware of is gearbox problems on diesel cars with relatively low mileage, so if an XC90 won't start, it's time to walk away.
Click here to find out more about the Volvo XC90, and click here to see the used cars for sale through What Car? Classifieds.
Our recommendation: 2.0 D5 Momentum 5dr AWD Geartronic
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