2014 VOLVO V60 T5 BRINGS SOFT SHOULDERS BUT A MUSCULAR FRONT END TO THE SPORT WAGON PARTY
THE LOWER PROFILE WAGON IS NEW FOR VOLVO AND UPS THE FUN QUOTIENT
The Volvo station wagon is back and it has grown up into a stylish, safe fun to drive hot little car. That's the takeaway from a week spent in the Volvo V60 T5 Wagon. If you are looking for that 144 style greenhouse Volvo wagon from the 70's and 80's you are going to be out of luck...or at least checking out Volvo's XC series.
No, the Volvo V60 T5 wagon is a completely different and I think much better driving experience. It is an agile well thought out car that really is much more sports sedan or hatchback than wagon.
From the outside, the V60 cuts an impresive silhouette. Soft lines roll into athletic shoulders and a rising belt line while the front is a bit more sculpted. The Volvo circle emblem is there but no diagonal sash to support it. This is a different Volvo!
Slide in behind the wheel and you can't help but notice what might be the most comfortable seats in the class! Supportive, soft to the touch, solid to the butt and bolstered just right, it made the long trip to upstate NY about as comfortable as you could expect. The bolsters also do a nice job of keeping you where you need to be if you get a little too sports wagony in your driving.
Interior materials feel high grade and the all screen instrument cluster is easy to read, informative, and is easy to control with a touch of the directional signal stalk. The center stack with pass through compartments that are unique to Volvo is stylish and adds to the overall feel of the car. The back seat is a bit tight and you do lose some cargo room with the sloping roof but you still have plenty of room back there. Under the hood the V60 delivers plenty of punch through the 240 HP turbo charged front wheel drive version I drove. You can get up to 325 horses in R Sport all wheel drive versions. Delivered through an 8 speed automatic that can also be manual shifted through paddles, 0-60 times were rapid, in the 6 second range and front wheel hop was non-existant when you jumped on the gas. The V60 hugged the road for take off!
Volvo also gets points for its Drive-E system that incorporates stop start technology and additional turbo boost the first seconds of hitting the gas. It all works well. Three modes are available according to your driving that moment.
Speaking about hugging the road, through the curves the Volvo did just that! Handling is much more sports sedan than wagon. The electric power assist steering has a natural feel to it, the sport package chassis is tight, the 19" tires and wheels a bit rough but white knuckle the road, especially in a blinding summer rainstorm that hit the NYS Thruway leaving nowhere to go. The car made you feel confident in it's ability.
How much is all this Volvo going to cost you may ask at this point... With a base price of $35,300 and adding the Blind Spot Safety and Premier packages as well as heated front seats kicked the V up to $42,225 as tested. Mileage is listed at 25 city 37 highway and 29 combined. The V60 is not yet rated in government crash tests. With Volvo's excellent City Safety and BLIS packages driving the V60 is as safe as you can be outside your mothers womb.
I love this car. It brings the Volvo panache and DNA to a fun to drive, quick, competent and safe hauler that should give the more popular cars in the class a pretty good run for their money. If you want boxy and roomier you can still get it in the XC series but if you want to drive a Volvo that the kids will be proud to be seen in (especially if you are driving that R Sport) and you will get a thrill out of finding that country road in, the V60 is something you should be looking at.