Unlike the regular V60, the Cross Country only comes with a choice of three diesel engines. The cheapest motor is the 2.0-litre D3 with 148bhp, enough power for easy cruising and reasonable acceleration. Refinement is pretty good if not as impressive as a 2.0-litre TDI Audi A4 Allroad.
You can choose between manual or automatic gearboxes but you can only have front-wheel drive with this engine. That might mean it’s barely any more capable than a regular V60 off-road, but it does mean emissions and economy are low for a car of this type. The next step up is the 2.0-litre D4 that again comes as a front-wheel drive manual or automatic. It has 187bhp so acceleration is strong and cruising is effortless. Impressively though, it has the same claimed emissions and economy as the D3. With that in mind, it’s the engine we’d pick if you can afford it.
There is also an all-wheel drive version of the Cross Country that is also badged D4. This may appeal if you do actually need some off-road ability, but it has a larger 2.4-litre engine that is an older design. It has plenty of performance but is far less refined than the 2.0-litre diesels and is much less efficient. With that in mind, we would avoid it if possible.
The V60 is a bit more comfortable than the regular V60 but it can still get choppy on bad roads. Handling is tidy enough albeit with less grip and more body roll than its on-road-only sibling. Unfortunately the steering ruins any fun. It reacts so quickly that you find yourself re-adjusting it mid-corner, and there's very little feedback from the front tyres.
With road noise subdued and suspension noise negligible, the V60 is quiet enough in isolation. However, it's not as refined as its key rivals due to a combination of wind and engine noise. The gearshift on manual versions is vague, too. The eight-speed auto offers nearly imperceptible changes in unhurried use, and satisfyingly rapid up-shifts in faster use, but isn't as spot-on with its ratio choices as the best transmissions out there.