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Volvo XC90 Review

Volvo XC90 Tested September 2015

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Quick Summary

Highly Recommended. A car that has it all, it lacks in no department.

Road Test

Driverless cars can’t be far off if the Volvo XC90 is anything to go by. It’s at the cutting-edge of technology, that’s for sure. There’s not much it can’t do for itself. It’ll park itself in a bay or a parallel space. If you stray towards the edge of your lane it’ll pull you back into line.

The adaptive cruise control is so good that you’ll rarely need to touch the pedals and, of course, the tailgate needs no human labour to open. There are three power choices – a 320hp petrol, a petrol plug-in hybrid with a combined power of 407hp and a 225hp diesel.

The petrol boasts reasonable figures of 36 to the gallon and 179g/km of CO2, while the hybrid has mind-boggling stats of 134mpg and 49g/km. But it’s the diesel that’s likely to be the volume seller, managing as it does 50mpg and 149g/km, both very good figures for a big all-wheel-drive SUV.

Standard kit is impressive, with all cars, starting with entry-level Momentum spec, getting lots of safety gear like pedestrian detection, auto braking, lane departure warning and road sign display. There’s also leather, a power driver’s seat, sat nav, a nine-inch touch screen, 19in alloys, parking sensors and that very useful power tailgate.

The next level up, Inscription, adds a power passenger seat, a 12-inch TFT display for the driver and the rather grand-sounding multi-colour theatre lighting. R-Design is the sporty version, with sports seats and lots of sports trim such as pedals and tinted windows.

The cabin is top-notch and the highlight is the very good touch screen, which sits like an upright tablet. It feels different to anything else out there, with excellent usability meaning all functions are easy to access, and the screen is brilliant quality.

It’s endlessly comfortable and there are seven seats when needed. When they’re not, you’ve got lots of boot space. The drive is a smooth, powerful and satisfying one, especially on long trips, where the car will do practically all of the work for you. On or off-road, there’s little that the XC90 can’t do. It gives cars like the pricier Range Rover a run for their money as far as functionality goes.

It’s got to be one of the most complete cars on sale today.

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