2019 Volvo V60 Momentum quick spin review and rating


The 2019 Volvo V60 is the latest wagon from the storied Swedish automaker. It slots just below the full-size V90 and shares underpinnings with just about every other Volvo model, including the XC90, XC60 and XC40 crossovers as well as the S90 and S60 sedans. Power comes from a 316 horsepower twincharged (super and turbocharged) 2.0-liter inline four. A plug-in hybrid variant is on the way sometime soon.

Our model is the base trim with the T6 powertrain and all-wheel drive. Power is sent to all-four wheels through an 8-speed automatic. Options include the $2,100 premium package (power-retractable mirrors, blind-spot monitoring with cross-traffic alert, keyless entry with a hands-free tailgate), the $2,500 multimedia package (upgraded infotainment and audio system) and individual features like 19-inch wheels ($900) and heated rear seats ($750).

Senior Editor, Green, John Beltz Snyder: With snow in the forecast, I had taken the 2019 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid home with the hopes of having some fun with it in Michigan’s winter weather. The snow held off during my time with the Subie, but absolutely dumped on Ann Arbor when I took the Volvo V60 home for a long weekend.

My drive home wasn’t quite so eventful, and I was able to enjoy the car’s smooth ride and easy acceleration on dry roads. The 316 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque from the T6 engine are plenty for maintaining a brisk highway pace. It stays super quiet, though, so you kind of have to discern what the powertrain is doing through feel rather than sound.

Then the snowstorm hit. It took a while to clean off the several inches of snow that had accumulated on the V60, but I was treated to very effective seat and steering wheel heaters when I was done. I put the car seat in the back — no troubles there — and me and my large son were ready to run some errands.

I was a little worried about getting down my street, which hadn’t been plowed, but the V70 was happy to trek through the near half-foot of powder — even on Pirelli all-seasons — until we got to more travelled roads. Heading around town, it felt stable on the packed, unsalted snow, but I still tread gingerly. If any electronic nannies were working overtime because of the lack of traction, they weren’t making any noise about it. I had no issues with inclines, and the all-wheel-drive was effortless as it passed folks spinning their wheels in parking lots.

Later that night, I was able to get back in the car again alone after the roads had cleared of traffic and, to a lesser extent, of snow. When given chance, the V60 proved to be a really fun car to drive in the snow. I don’t think I could ever tire of giving the gas a little tap while pulling out of a corner. The little wiggle from the rear end and easy recovery with a dab of countersteer had me grinning as I wandered the abandoned roadways near my house.

Manager, Production, Eddie Sabatini: First impression as I approached the V60 in our parking garage: stunning. Stunning profile and really, good looks from every angle. Inside is no different. There aren’t many automakers that can compete in the design department with what is doing right now. The all wheel drive with instant traction was nice for the snowy ride home but one gripe I had was how every bump in the road was noticeable right through to the seat.

Associate Editor Reese Counts: Does any automaker have a better looking lineup than Volvo? Every single model is a looker both inside and out. The interiors are clean, functional and have some of the best materials of any car I’ve ever driven. The new “City Weave” cloth upholstery proves you can have a premium interior without full leather. My wife — a proud crossover lover — said she would be willing to drive a wagon if she could get that interior. God bless Thomas Ingenlath (former design chief now in charge of Polestar) and everything he’s done for Volvo.

2019 Volvo V60

Too bad the driving experience can’t quite match the looks. The ride is too firm (something I blame on the 19-inch wheels) and the engine is a bit coarse. There’s power, sure, but because the engine doesn’t sound that great, you don’t really want to lay into it. I expect better NVH from a car in this class. If I’m not buying a sport model, I don’t particularly want to hear a buzzy four-banger. I haven’t driven the plug-in variant, but if it’s anything like the XC90 or XC60, it won’t be much better.

The tech, too, is less than stellar. There are lots of active and passive safety features, but the infotainment is a disaster. The screen looks crisp, but it’s slow and poorly laid out. There seems to be no rhyme or reason to where functions have been placed. All the climate controls are in the touchscreen, too.

That said, I’m not sure any of this would prevent me from buying one. I do like the steering, and I’d love to drive a car with the standard 18s. I think a little more sidewall would go a long way. The seats are extremely comfortable and there’s plenty of room inside for both people and cargo.

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