Volvo V60 long-term test review
The Volvo V60 beat the Audi A4 Avant and Skoda Superb Estate when we group-tested it, but is it as impressive when you live with it every day?...
- The Car: Volvo V60 D4 Momentum Pro
- Run by: John Bradshaw, chief photographer
- Why it's here: To see if one of the best modern estates is a better choice than an SUV
- Needs to: Cope with all of my photography gear, provide smooth transport on long journeys, return reasonable fuel economy and be an effortless commuter car
Price £36,610 Price as tested £43,835 Miles covered 5300 Official Economy 52.3mpg (WLTP combined) Test economy 44.0mpg Options fitted Xenium Pack, which includes panoramic sunroof, 360 parking camera and Park Assist Pilot (£1800), Intellisafe Pro which includes Pilot Assist, adaptive cruise control, Blind Spot Warning, Cross Traffic Alert (£1625), Premium Harmon Kardon sound system (£825), 18in Diamond Cut alloy wheels (£775), metallic paint (£650), dark tinted windows (£600) Convenience Pack (£500), Smartphone Integration (£300) and spare wheel and jack (£150)
11 January 2019 – A premium place
Let’s face it, no matter how advice articles you read or how many What Car? videos you watch, when it comes down to buying a new car, more often than not your final decision is an emotional one. Or at least it is with me. After all, purchasing a car remains the second biggest financial commitment most people will make after housing, so surely you want to spend your money on something that feels a bit special?
That’s why if I were in the position to buy a new family estate car, I’d choose ‘my’ V60 over its main rivals from Germany. Not because of its class-leading boot space, impressive fuel economy and acres of interior space (although those are all important factors), but because it looks and feels like every little piece of it has been carefully crafted by people who genuinely care about design, and I like that.
From the Swedish flag on the driver’s seat to the knurling on the starter button and air vents, every small detail reminds me that I’m not simply driving a run-of-the-mill estate from Munich. For some, I admit, that won’t matter a jot. But for me, it’s the difference between simply sitting in the car in the showroom or deciding to take it for a test drive.
And unlike some so-called premium manufacturers, such as Peugeot and DS, those details aren’t some sort of visual garnish designed to cover up poor ingredients. Even in humble Momentum Pro spec, everything in the V60 feels well screwed together and the materials are top notch. Take the aluminium trim for example. It feels like it’s been cut from a solid block of metal and is styled in such a way that it wouldn’t look out of place in your front living room. And although the great majority of the dashboard is made up of plastic, all of it is soft to the touch – something that can’t be said for rivals such as the Mercedes-Benz C-Class Estate.
Of course, though, not everything is perfect. Indeed, if there is one area of the interior that, despite looking fantastic, doesn’t function quite as well as advertised, it’s the infotainment touchscreen. But instead of souring this positive update, I’m going to save my grumblings for next time.