VOLVO XC60 D5
VOLVO XC60 D5 AWD R-DESIGN
An XC40/90 compromise?
SO, YOU’RE THINKING OUT OF THE BENZ AND BMW BOX, BECAUSE YOU ARE A PRACTICAL THINKER AND WANT TO STAND OUT FROM THE CROWD. BERNIE HELLBERG DISCOVERS WHY THE NEW VOLVO XC60 IS HARD TO BEAT, ALTHOUGH IT LACKS SOME OF THE CHARM OF ITS XC40 SIBLING.
Volvo is at the forefront of avantgarde design since the arrival of the XC90 premium SUV, and they’ve been riding the wave with the S90 sedan and its V90 Cross Country sibling, and more recently with the introduction of the XC40 and now the slightly larger than that, XC60 medium compact SUV.
The XC60 is a beautiful beast – long bonnet, the raked windscreen and set back cabin make for a sleek profile, and although it’s not as deliciously boxy as the XC40, I’m a fan of the carved-out door panels and wingstyle rocker panels, and that stately grille with is giant badge, and the vertical taillights.
SHE’S GOT THE LOOK
The R-Design D5 looks almost identical to its petrol twin, the (range-topping by a mere R2,000 difference) R-Design T6. The interior is modern and minimalist; although the 9.3” vertical touchscreen isn’t quite as impressive as the giant display in the XC90, it’s still a unique looking set-up. With that screen taking care of climate control, vehicle settings, and the media system, the cabin has been decluttered, with minimal buttons on display – just like other new-generation Volvos. An aluminium mesh trim snakes its way along that cleanly designed dash, around that display, and the oversized air vents.
The XC60 is a mid-sized SUV with dimensions similar to its Audi Q5, MercedesBenz GLC, and BMW X3 rivals. It is 4,688 mm long, 2,117 mm wide, and 1,685 mm tall, endowing it with enough room on the inside to compare favourably with the competition, if not always beat them outright.
The cabin is spacious but not overly so, with plenty of head, leg and shoulder room, with even taller rear passengers being catered for regardless (almost) of the driving position.
Storage inside is good, with two cup holders and large door pockets in the front, and two cup holders and smaller door pockets in the back. The centre console storage area under the centre armrest is also a decent size and is a clear reminder of the binnacle on all new Volvo cars
Boot capacity of 505 litres (with rear seats up) isn’t huge, and rivals such as the Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Mercedes-Benz GLC have 550 litres of cargo space. Not that this was an obvious hindrance during our week-long test, but if you’re serious about space and you are in the market for a premium SUV, load volume might become a challenge.
VALUE FOR MONEY?
The XC60 R-Design D5 lists for R782,036 at the time of going to print, which positions it second to the top of the range. The D5 derivative is also available in Momentum (R735,636), and Inscription trim (R779,736), but with the addition of an R-Design steering wheel, sports seats, pedals and carpet, the tiny price difference between Inscription and R-Design should have you sign for the latter in a heartbeat.
The standard features list is extensive – there are the vertical touchscreen and a 12.3” interactive driver display, satnav, cruise control (adaptive is optional),
head-up display, 10-speaker stereo system,