Auto Express - - Winter Driving Special -

VOLVO has moved the lat­est XC60 up­mar­ket com­pared with its pre­de­ces­sor, but you only need to climb in­side to know that it’s worth ev­ery penny. This is a bril­liantly lux­u­ri­ous SUV, and even en­try-level Mo­men­tum mod­els come loaded with tech­nol­ogy and safety kit.

The Swedish brand has taken the best bits from the larger XC90 and crammed them all into a smaller and more at­tain­able pack­age. We think so highly of the XC60 that we crowned it Best Pre­mium SUV at the Auto Ex­press New Car Awards 2017, ahead of ac­com­plished op­po­si­tion such as the Audi Q5, Jaguar F-pace and Mercedes GLC.

One thing you’re not short of in the XC60 is va­ri­ety; three well equipped trim lev­els are on offer, but you’ll feel far from short-changed even with an en­try Mo­men­tum model. As stan­dard it comes with 18-inch al­loy wheels, leather seats, sat-nav, cruise con­trol, Blue­tooth, an au­to­matic tail­gate and four-wheel drive. Racy R-de­sign spec­i­fi­ca­tion adds a sportier look to the ex­te­rior.

Then there are the en­gine op­tions; com­pany car driv­ers might be tempted by the T8 plug-in hy­brid, thanks to its 49g/km CO2 emis­sions, but for pri­vate buy­ers the cheaper diesels are dif­fi­cult to beat. The 187bhp 2.0-litre D4 is the one we’d rec­om­mend be­cause it de­liv­ers the right blend of per­for­mance and econ­omy. The XC60 is also very spa­cious for those in the back and the 505-litre boot can han­dle ev­ery­thing a fam­ily of five can throw at it.

Which­ever model or spec you go for, the XC60’S focus on com­fort over sporty han­dling makes a re­fresh­ing change.

“XC60 crams the best bits of the larger XC90 into a smaller, more at­tain­able pack­age”

With its air sus­pen­sion set to com­fort mode, the XC60 bal­ances a smooth ride and con­trol in cor­ners very well

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