Overall: Volvo’s Euro-shaped XC60 tall wagon gets some new jewelry, but not much else for 2016.
Drivetrain: A 240-horsepower turbo four-cylinder is the base engine for the front-wheel-drive T5; turbocharged and supercharged 2.0 is standard in T6 front-wheel-drive; 2.5-liter inline five-cylinder in the all-wheel-drive T5 makes equal power, but less torque; a 300-325 horse turbo six-cylinder gets the call in T6 AWD and harder-edged R-Design.
Volvo’s XC60 might be a familiar sight, but it has remained a handsome machine. Recent updates under the hood helped keep it competitive, such as Volvo’s first new engine under new ownership from China. The 2.0-liter “Drive-E” engine is turbocharged in the base T5 model where it’s rated at 240 horsepower. But move up to the T6 and the Drive-E 2.0 is both turbocharged and supercharged for added power and smoothness, and delivers 302 horsepower. When all-wheel-drive is specified, the T5 runs with a turbocharged 240 horsepower 2.5-liter five-cylinder, while the T6 AWD uses a turbocharged 3.0-liter six-cylinder producing 300 horsepower. The T6 AWD R-Design edition boasts a 325-horsepower version of the 3.0 (that runs on regular gas) and includes sharper steering and suspension settings plus 20-inch wheels. Of course there’s a high level of standard equipment, such as dual-zone climate control and all the power goodies. Since Volvo’s calling card is safety, and the associated technology that travels in lockstep with it, there’s much more to the XC60 than meets the eye. The standard City Safety system is a laser-based monitor that automatically applies the brakes if it senses the driver is about to make contact with the vehicle in front. Optional is blind-spot alert that warns of approaching vehicles from either side, adaptive cruise control that maintains a safe distance from the vehicle ahead, and adaptive bi-xenon (high- and low-beam) headlights that pivot up to 15 degrees in the direction of a turn. Optional safety technologies include a system that detects pedestrians — and cyclists — and can automatically brake for them. For 2016, most XC60 models get new wheel styles.