The new V60 makes you feel like Swedish royalty
Vienna, 2°C, cold wind blowing into my face and I'm very eager to get into the car. Not only because of the heated seats, but because it's the new Volvo V60 I'm going to drive for today!
This is in my opinion a strong contender for the title of the most beautiful Volvo ever. The V60 is (among the realistically reachable cars) my absolute dream car at the moment. I have seen it before and I recently sat in one for the first time and at least since then I know, this has to be my next car, sooner or later (okay considering the price probably later).
Anyways, I finally get to drive it and I'm really excited. So I quickly get inside the handsome estate, start the engine via a turn of the most luxurious start-stop button I've ever had the pleasure to use, turn on the heated windscreen and seats, and put the climate control to max.
I find my perfect seat and steering wheel position in about half a minute, in the meantime the windscreen already has become completely defrosted and it becomes cosy in here - the Swedes obviously know how to cope with cold weather. I pause for a moment to take it all in. This is not the engine nor the spec I would get, which would be a petrol or a petrol plug-in hybrid engine and the R-Design trim together with some nice options such as the full leather dashboard, the panoramic roof, Bowers & Wilkins sound system, 20" alloys, Polestar Performance Optimisation, shift padels, etc. etc. ... yep, there's the price problem again. The V60 can get ridiculously expensive very quickly.
My test car is not the V60 of my dreams, it's actually quite far off. Apart from a few gimmicks it's a rather low equipped mid-spec model: D4 Diesel with the Momentum trim, in the understated Savile grey metallic for around 50.000€, probably the V60 that will be sold the best in Austria. So the question I asked myself at this day was, do you really need to pay an extra 30 to 40k or isn't it already great like that?
As I sit inside my test car and let my eyes wander around I was once again stunned by Volvo's minimalist design, this is an exceptionally beautiful interior, even in Momentum trim.
Okay I already knew it's a really nice in here, but now I'm slowly rolling out onto the road and driving my first metres with the V60 I do feel like some Swedish royal. And my first official act as Duke of Gothenburg is to use the drive mode selector to put the Volvo into Dynamic mode.
I immediately notice the difference in steering wheel weight and brake pedal feeling. The most significant difference though are the completely changed characteristics of the 8-speed automatic gearbox which suddenly behaves like I'm in one drag race after the other when I'm actually driving about 20 m from traffic light to traffic light. This mode is really made to give you all the power available.
Comfort mode is default (and tbh it's the best mode for city driving). There is also Eco mode and even an Individual mode you can program to your preferences in the vehicle settings, using the massive touch screen in the centre console. I know it's a cliche but the touch screen actually works like an iPad. You don't need any time to get used to it!
The V60 is a reasonably big car, nevertheless even in the Viennese traffic it doesn't feel that big because also in Dynamic mode the steering is still rather light (maybe a bit too light for my taste). So manoeuvrability is really quite good.
But I need to get out of the city and as I'm entering the motorway I get to use all of the 190 PS for the first time. It's a short enjoyment since it accelerates to 130 km/h very quickly. Considering the V60's weight of 1800 kg the power of the D4 may not seem that much but in normal traffic situations it's enough to make for an effortless feeling - It certainly doesn't feel sporty, and it's very clearly not supposed to since the Momentum trim is more about easy everyday use. I don't miss any power but I'd guess the 250 PS T5 would be just perfect.
The seats are superbly comfortable and truly well made. Being used to the sport seats of my V40 the only problem I have with them is that they offer no side support whatsoever, but sport seats are of course also available for the 60 series so that problem can be fixed.
Suddenly a little blue sign pops up in the speedometer to let me know there's a speed camera ahead - now that's a useful feature! 😀
I love the digital information display. Although it's loaded with information I find it very clear and to get the navigation displayed in there is super handy.
Another very helpful feature I haven't experienced while driving before are the blind spot indicators in the mirrors. Every car should have these!
While driving along the motorway I also realised how wide the trim-parts beside the side windows are. This may seem like an irrelevant detail but being able to rest your elbow on there and the other one on the unbelievably high centre console makes commuting very comfortable.
I finally get to some B-roads where I can try out the chassis and the suspension a bit better. The V60 Momentum is definitely designed as a relaxed cruiser but throwing the Swede around curves can be fun anyways and I'm surprised how little you notice of it's weight. The steering wheel is actually a fair bit smaller than the V40's which does enhance the fun. I somehow felt it could have been designed more ergonomical at the back where you usually hold it though (this wouldn't be an issue with the optional paddles though). Sadly the steering feedback is a bit numb overall.
I drive around nearly all day and in the afternoon I find a quiet spot to have another detailed look at the car. Even in Momentum trim and with only 17" alloys I think it looks quite aggressive but at the same time stays true to Volvo's legendary minimalist Scandinavian design, overall a truly premium look.
You really have lots of space in the front and in the back seats and there should be enough storage compartments to put all your stuff. Everything is so well built and there is absolutely nothing clattering around. Some pieces of plastic don't feel very upmarket though.
The boot is massive, I mean what did you expect - it's a Volvo estate! It also has this very handy separator-thingy you can tilt up to prevent smaller loads from getting thrown about.
The load cover can be quite annoying though. In the bigger V90 it slides up automatically when you open the bootlid and down again when you close it, in the V60 it doesn't. So if you forget to manually slide it down again (and trust me, you will forget it as I have at least three times that day) you won't see much through the rear window.
By now it already feels like this is my own car for several months. You get used to it very quickly and it's an easy to like companion with some minor flaws I can forgive, they might even make it just that little more human and likable.
As the sun goes down it's time to drive back to the dealership. So, let's hit the night streets of Vienna!
I was quite sad when I had to give the V60 back, in just a few hours we have become good friends. Overall I have to say this car truly lives up to my expectations, it somehow makes you feel good when you drive around in it, like nothing in the world could ever bring you down.
I have learnt that it's in fact not necessary to load it with each and every option available, but I still would rather have the R-Design and a petrol engine ;)