Firstly, I know I have said many times that I don’t like Plug-in HYBRID’s – well frankly, that has now changed – thanks mainly of course to the vehicle you see before you today. The XC60 T8 has in very basic terms – changed my whole opinion on Plug-in HYBRID technology.

I used to dislike my neighbour who used to arrive home after a hard day at work – to then spend their valuable family time messing about outside in the cold and rain plugging in their vehicle to recharge its batteries before retiring for the evening. I remember thinking at the time that it was a stupid idea and why would anyone buy such a thing.

Well, after many soul searching activities, I have released that I was wrong, and I’m sorry. Moving on, I now feel better after admitting defeat and that’s why I’m going to tell you all about the Volvo XC60 T8 – which is nothing short of brilliant!

Power and Efficiency

The XC60 I had on test was fitted with a 1,969cc petrol engine with 400Nm of torque between 2200 & 4800rpm. 0-62 is dealt with in around 5.5sec – meaning this is Porsche territory. Floor the throttle, and it will just slap you in the face with its immense turn of speed. Also, push the pedal to maximum, and it will propel you on your way to 140mph in the blink of an eye.

I like this electric/engine combination a lot because it’s very refined and it does a very good job of getting you around at a very fast pace brilliantly.

Power? Well, let’s not forget this is the twin-engine version (T8 – Plug-in HYBRID), meaning you get the extra power of electricity to help wiz up those rear wheels at a moment’s notice - thanks mainly to an 87hp/240Nm Electric Motor. So, it now has 303hp plus the addition of 87hp of electricity, which is staggering. Don’t forget you also get the extra torque from that electric motor which all helps in getting you from where you want to go in no time at all.

The big plus point here though is its torque levels which makes overtaking so easy and pretty much effortless, even for a vehicle that I would consider to be large. Saying that it’s frankly amazing which is why I have fallen in love with it.

On the road

I expected nothing but the best because my test car was fitted with AWD - which means you can take it anywhere you like subject to the ride height of course.

Bringing it back to basics for a moment, the XC60 T8 ticks all the right boxes and its AWD abilities are very good on pretty much any surface. I was amazed at the amount of gip it had on and off-road. Volvo has done a great job in getting the AWD system to work on all surfaces - while still allowing it to feel like a normal road car once you hit the tarmac.

Design & Technology

Volvo’s interiors are very similar across all models now and are very ‘plush’ where everything fits and works for the driver. Also, nothing is fussy, even that touchscreen display is simple to use and not complex at all. The seating is also well designed and even after hours of driving around the roads of Staffordshire - I still felt as fresh as a daisy.

So, what do you get on the inside fitted as standard? Well, lots actually such as; Nine-inch centre console touch screen, Volvo On Call with app – available for your smartphone, smartwatch or tablet, this enables you to control various car functions remotely, Sensus Navigation – full European mapping with traffic information and lifetime map updates, voice-activated control system, Sensus Connect –allows you to access a range of web apps and browse the internet.

Plus, City Safety with steering support–includes pedestrian, cyclist and large animal detection, and front collision warning with fully automatic emergency braking and steering assistance, Oncoming Lane Mitigation – automatically provides steering assistance if you unwittingly drift out of your lane, guiding you back into your lane and out of the path of any oncoming vehicles, Run-off Road Protection –automatically tightens the front seatbelts should the car inadvertently leave the road, while front seat frames with a collapsible section reduce vertical forces to help prevent spinal injuries, LED headlights with active high beam, Two-zone climate control with CleanZone air-quality system, Power-operated tailgate, Front and rear parking sensors 12.3-inch active TFT crystal driver’s information display and heated front seats. Wow! That’s a lot.

Also, being the T8 version, you get the addition of; Auxiliary Fuel-Fired Heater with Pre-Conditioning Functions, 4.5m Charge Cable with 3 Pin Plug, Fresh Air Subwoofer, Charge Cable Bag, Electric Rear Axle Drive, Recharging Port Located in Nearside Front Wing and a Lithium-Ion Battery 11.6kWh.

To sum up

A great machine that will do its utmost to please you every time you turn the key (not an actual key – just a button you turn) – also, there are no surprises with the XC60 because you have it all wrapped up in one perfect package. So, all that is left to say is 5 stars from me.

Price: from £56,955

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