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2015 Volvo XC90 – Expert Review

  • Model: Volvo XC90
  • Year: 2014
  • Gear Type: Automatic
  • Boot size: Married+Kids/Large
  • Safety Rating: 5
  • Add-ons: MP3, Aircon, Electric Windows, Heated Seats, More
  • Overall Satisfaction: My true love
  • Listed: November 27, 2014 5:22 pm
  • Expires: This ad has expired
2015 Volvo XC90 – Expert Review
2015 Volvo XC90 – Expert Review2015 Volvo XC90 – Expert Review

Best feature

Unlike the other reviews on this website, this is a review by one of our professionals who was lucky enough to experience and review this model. In this review, you’ll get an exclusive opportunity to have a closer look at the all new Volvo XC90, which is a 2015 model. The 2015 Volvo XC90 is the first all new car for the Swedish company since 2010 when they separated from Ford and moved on in their own direction. Granted, some people may feel that ‘their own direction’ might be a bit deceiving, since the Chinese own the company now, but the XC90 is a car based on the Scandinavian auto-making philosophy in absolutely every aspect. Moreover, it is a successor to the previous XC90 which was so good that it was sold for 12 years with just some minor tweaks. Volvo couldn’t be expected to mess with this kind of reputation. Upgrading it was a more natural route. Engines The engines are new as well. Even for the flagship model, the engineers at Volvo opted for the seemingly small in-line 4-cylinder engines with the displacement of just 2L, but with respectable power ratings due to the wonders of forced induction systems. And the plural in the previous sentence is not accidental. Top of the range is reserved for the modern-technology twin-engine setup in the Plug-in Hybrid. The front wheels are powered by the mentioned 2L petrol engine which, with the generous help of a supercharger and turbocharger – hence the plural – produces about 320 HP, while the electric motor powering the rear wheels adds another 80 HP for the maximum power of about 400 HP and twisting force of 472 lb-ft of torque. The 2L, 4-cylinder setup seems sufficient now, doesn’t it? As expected from a hybrid, CO2 emissions and fuel consumption are kept at an almost unbelievable minimum. Factory released stats state that the emissions are at 64 g/km, while fuel consumption is at about 2.5 L/100km. All this from a 400 HP car with the top speed in the excess of 230 km/h and acceleration to 100 km/h in – again, according to the manufacturer – 6.4 seconds. The power is transmitted to all four wheels via a new 8-speed automatic gearbox. The twin-engine setup allows for numerous powering options including electric only, petrol only, or hybrid providing amazing versatility of choice between various layers of fuel efficiency and performance. For people with limited budgets, there are two petrol-only versions. One of them is the same T6 engine from the Hybrid which gives the mentioned 320 HP and 295 lb-ft of torque. Lack of the electric motor accounts for the drop in performance and fuel efficiency rating, but the figures are still respectable. It consumes 7.2L of fuel per 100 km on average, while still offering the top speed similar to the one from the Hybrid and a slightly worse acceleration to 100 km/h of 6.9 seconds. The second option is the entry-level T5 petrol engine with similar consumption, but reduced power of 254 HP. There are also two diesels to choose from. The entry-level employs the D4 engine with 190 HP providing the fuel efficiency of about 4.9 l per 100 km on average, while the more powerful D5 diesel gives 225 HP to play with while still offering amazing fuel consumption figures of about 5.3 l/100 km. Even though the drop in power figures is significant, the diesels are no slouches. The faster one reaches 100 km/h in less than 8 seconds and has the top speed of 220 km/h. The cheapest engine option is the weaker diesel which comes for the base price of R792,000, while the most expensive one is, expectedly, the Hybrid which will set you back about R993,100 for the base price model. Exterior On the outside, the Volvo XC90 is - neat. There are no sharp cuts, or exotic design solutions. The XC90 is an elegant and luxurious family car for people who want safety, room and comfort, so there was no need for extravagant styling ideas. Still, it is by no means boring – the T-shaped daytime running lights, for example, are named “Thor’s Hammer”. You don’t give such a name to a dull creation. Compared to the previous model, the new XC90 is noticeably lighter, but also somewhat lower and a bit longer and wider. The wheels go to as high as 22”, which look beautiful, although that might be a bit too much for ride comfort. Still, there is a solution which can bring you the best of both worlds – an optional air suspension. Interior Regardless of the stunning engines mentioned above, the interior might be the biggest advantage of the new Volvo XC90. Soft leather, genuine wood, gear stick made of crystal glass, all hand-crafted and with absolutely beautiful diamond cut dials – just listing some of the features exudes luxury and comfort. The new XC90’s interior is actually deemed the most luxurious ever by Volvo. Additionally, everything is designed in a way that the car seems spacious and airy. There are three rows of seats – for seven passengers in total – and the final row offers enough room to provide comfort for two passengers who are up to 170 cm tall, according to Volvo. This was accomplished using two design solutions. First of all, the car is wider and longer and secondly the seats are slimmer compared to the previous XC90. This might suggest that they are less comfortable now, but that would be wrong. They provide even more comfort and reassuring support than the ones in the outgoing model. The central section of the dash is reserved for a large, tablet-resembling touch screen. It is tilted and it serves as a master control for the ‘infotainment’ system. The panel is very responsive and it has three main screens to swipe between. Speaking of this, the interface is very well designed, user-friendly and intuitively organized and there are no lags. The screen helps you control many things so this leaves room for the dashboard to be very minimalistic with just two wonderfully lit and easy-to-read instruments and six buttons altogether. Hence, the dashboard is clean and elegant. Speaking of the buttons, they are diamond cut to ensure a wonderfully tactile feeling. Once you have tried this, you will wonder why this is not a standard throughout the industry. Additional perk is the high-quality Bowers & Wilkins sound system. Versatile seat layout allows you to fold any seat or all of them and thus increase the cargo room to an unbelievable 1900 l of volume. Safety Volvo has, for a long time, been a paragon of safety. The XC90 proudly continues the tradition, but it also takes it to a whole new level. There is a plethora of passive safety and crash prevention system, driver alerts and crash avoidance features. Also, there is a queue assist system which helps you keep distance from other vehicles at lower speeds, making sitting in grid-locks significantly less dreary. Moreover there are two unique and new technologies. The first one is run-off road detection (helping you to not swerve to the side and end up in the gutter if you fall asleep for example) and protection system (increasing safety if you still do swerve) which automatically engages electrical belt retraction and a very advanced system in the front seats which can prevent spine injuries by absorbing forces. The second one is automatic breaking at intersections when you accidentally drive into oncoming traffic. Bottom line: our professional definitely gives this car the Thumbs Up.

Worst feature

The first look at the all new Volvo XC90 leaves no room for any major complaints.
The only issue is that the infotainment touch screen includes loads of controls and settings, so it might require you to take your eyes of the road occasionally.
And the Hybrid is notably more expensive, but this was expected.

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