Volvo V90 review

Costs & verdict

Manufacturer price from:£39,835
What Car? Target Price£35,873
Volvo V90 2018 RHD boot open
Review continues below...

Costs & verdict

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

The V90 is competitively priced versus its main rivals when you compare like-for-like engines – the D4 to the BMW 520d, Mercedes E 220 d and Audi A6 2.0 TDI, and the D5 with BMW’s 525d, Mercedes’ E 350 d and Audi’s 3.0 TDI.

Volvo’s strong residuals will help keep PCP finance quotes competitive, too, while the V90’s relatively low CO2 emissions – particularly in two-wheel-drive D4 form – make it an attractive prospect for company car drivers. Just make sure you avoid the T6 due to its hefty 37% BIK rate and pricey first year tax cost. However, both the BMW 5 Series Touring and Audi A6 Avant have lower emissions if you’re looking at regular petrol or diesel models. 

This is where the T8 really scores. With carbon emissions of just 46g/km, it falls into the lowest company car tax bracket. If you do plenty of short journeys punctuated by recharges, you’ll barely have to refuel it, and we saw over 50mpg on a 50 mile commute on a fully charged battery. Start using it without any electricity in its belly, and you’ll see economy plummet to the low 30s or below. As for the T4, it's might be a little cheaper than the D4, but it'll cost more to run. Likewise, the T5 won't get anywhere near the economy of the diesels.

Most people will choose the D4 engine and entry-level Momentum Plus trim, and it’s easy to see why; LED headlights, heated leather seats, sat-nav, Bluetooth, a DAB radio, a powered tailgate, automatic headlights and wipers, keyless start and rear parking sensors are just some of the luxuries that feature as standard. R-Design Plus adds some subtle sporty styling tweaks inside and out as well as that stiffer suspension, while Inscription Plus adds a head-up display, massaging seats and some other plush styling finishes inside. Momentum Plus still certainly makes the most sense, though.

Volvo is synonymous with safety and it has taken this to a new level with the V90, upgrading its standard emergency city braking system to recognise large animals, as well as pedestrians, cyclists and, of course, cars. Standard, too, is a system that will automatically steer you back into your lane on the motorway. Euro NCAP hasn’t tested the V90, but the S90 saloon is one of the safest cars in its class, performing especially well in the safety assist category, unsurprisingly.

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Volvo V90 2018 RHD infotainment
Volvo V90 2018 RHD cornering right
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The V90 is spacious, practical and classy

  • Super-spacious rear seats
  • Generous standard kit
  • High quality interior
  • Dull handling on standard suspension
  • Distracting infotainment system
  • Lethargic gearbox