Volvo has overhauled its compact crossover line for 2018, creating the XC60 T8 – a Plug-In Hybrid with distinctive styling and lots of safety features. Volvo says: "Safety comes first. From the company that gives you more safety features than any other brand, the XC60 is infused with smart, intuitive innovations. Standard City Safety auto-braking technology helps protect you and those around you. If a collision is imminent ahead, it will brake automatically, reducing impact – or preventing it altogether when you’re driving at speeds of 31 mph or less. Rewarded for its safety technology, the XC60 received top honors as a 2017 Top Safety Pick+ from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. When equipped with the Advanced Package."
Positioned one step below the XC90 in the Volvo hierarchy, XC60 accounts for around 30% of worldwide sales for the company, now owned by Geely, the Chinese conglomerate. Since the XC60 was introduced 9 years ago, the company has sold over one million units, making it a popular SUV. Says Car and Driver reviewer Andrew Wendler: “Turned out in top-drawer Inscription trim, the XC60 is at the peak of its luxury and technical prowess.”
With the help of a supercharger and a turbocharger, the 313HP 2.0-liter inline-four engine works with two electric motors; one powers the rear axle; the other works with the 8-speed automatic transaxle. A 10.4kWh Lithium-ion battery pack produces electricity for the two motors – it sits inside the center tunnel to avoid intruding on cabin space. The combined HP of the engine and 2 e-motors is 400Hp and 472 lb-ft of torque, which provides major acceleration; XC60 T8 achieves 60MPH in 5.1 seconds.
The PHEV travels 18 pure electric miles before the gas engine kicks in. Volvo claims the battery can be charged in as little as 3 hours from a 240V source, twice that from a 120V outlet.
Says Andrew Wendler: “The Surprisingly Quick Hybrid Compact Luxury Crossover segment is still in its infancy, and this Volvo outruns the few established players with ease. Neither the larger, plug-in BMW X5 xDrive40e (6.2/14.7 seconds) nor the Lexus RX450h F Sport AWD (7.1/15.4) is capable of matching it for petro-electro fury.”
Volvo’s Swedish design aesthetics go full throttle in the plug-in’s interior, combining comfortably sculpted seating, wood veneers and touches of satin metal trim. Says New York Daily News auto reviewer Kyle Campbell: “Volvo’s XC60 compact crossover is the latest nameplate to receive the brand’s “SPA” treatment, meaning it is underpinned by its Scalable Product Architecture, which has spawned the redesigned XC90, S90 and V90 in recent years. This means the XC60 gets a facelift with a new convex grille and Thor’s Hammer headlight, as well as a snappy interior with real driftwood trim pieces and a sound system that emulates the National Orchestra of Sweden.”
Base trim prices start at around $56K for the 2018 XC60 T8 eAWD Plug-in Hybrid Inscription.
Paying $71,590 for a top trim Inscription provides the following:
• A $1,100 Vision package (a blind-spot information system with steering assist, rear cross-traffic alert, automatically dimming side-view mirrors, and front and rear park assist with Park Assist Pilot),
• A $1,900 Advanced package (a head-up display, 360-degree camera, headlight washers, adaptive headlights)
• A $3,000 Luxury Seat package (Nappa leather upholstery, a heated steering wheel, heated and ventilated front seats with backrest massage and lumbar support, and heated rear seats)
• A $2,000 Convenience package (Volvo’s Pilot Assist semi-autonomous system with adaptive cruise control, a rearview mirror compass, power-folding second-row seats and headrests, power child locks, heated washer fluid routed through the wiper blades, and Volvo’s HomeLink).
A Bowers & Wilkins audio system can be added for $3,200.
A $5K Federal Tax incentive and a $1,500 California State rebate substantially decrease the prices.
Kyle Campbell: “Volvo solidified itself as a competitive luxury carmaker with its set of redesigned 90 Series vehicles. Now it has begun the process of reintroducing the world to the 60 Series and expanding its presence in the crossover world, a journey that will continue next year with the XC40. In the XC60, Volvo has a competitive high-end 5-seater that ranges from sporty to luxurious and also happens to look pretty darn good any way you slice it.”
This beautifully-designed SUV plug-in hybrid, with its excellent powertrain and transmission, stellar handling and 18 pure electric mile capability is the perfect crossover for drivers who appreciate ultra clean lines and forward-thinking Eco-conscious technology.
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