2020 Volvo XC60

2020 Volvo XC60 Test Drive Review: Practicality Perfected

by Belinda Anderson

We've got to get used to the fact that SUVs are taking over the world, with manufacturers now conflating their high-riding utility vehicles with performance cars, robbing crossovers of their intended levels of comfort and, in the process, turning them into jack-of-all-trade machines with a broad-spectrum appeal. So what makes the Volvo XC60 - the Swedish brand's best-selling model - so special? Built on the same SPA foundation as the S60 as well as the larger XC90, the second generation of Volvo's luxury compact SUV is the key to unlocking markets that have failed to fully embrace the brand. Ample space, advanced tech, beautiful finishes, and a sense of tranquility are, for the right target audience, like a soothing balm - an antidote to the onslaught of hardcore crossovers from other European manufacturers. This is not a BMW X3 or Alfa Romeo Stelvio, apparent in the XC60's lack of six-cylinder engines. Instead, a focused pair of four-cylinder motors - turbocharged and twin-charged respectively - deliver outputs ranging from 250-316 horsepower, while front- and all-wheel drivetrains put the power down fluently. We got behind the wheel of a range-topping XC60 T6 Inscription for a week to see if the softly-spoken XC60 has what it takes to conquer the market.

Read in this review:

2020 Volvo XC60 Changes: 🚙What’s the difference vs 2019 XC60?

For 2020, Volvo has made the 12.3-inch digital driver display standard on all its cars, and have added haptic feedback to the available Pilot Assist driver aids. Cars with the City Safety suite also get steering support included as standard, and autobrake is a standard feature for vehicles with the BLIS (blind-spot information) system. Some changes are made to the T8 Hybrid models too, but we review this, along with the Polestar Engineered derivative separately.

Some trim-specific updates are made to the XC60 for 2020, including standard leather upholstery and rear park assist on the base trim, while perforated Nappa leather is stock-fitted on the R-Design. The dashboard has also been given some extra attention, and four-zone climate control has been added from the mid-level models. Volvo has changed up the exterior look a little too, with gloss black accents on the mirrors caps, roof rails, and window trim for the R-Design. The features list has been reshuffled a little, with Park Assist Pilot now available as an option to both R-Design and Inscription models.

Pros and Cons

  • User-friendly infotainment system - once you've learned its tricks
  • Ergonomic, yet stylish, dashboard layout
  • Spacious all around
  • Quiet, serene cabin
  • Confident road-holding abilities
  • Superior advanced driver's aids
  • Optional sound system is sublime
  • Not quite as engaging in Eco/Comfort modes
  • Some features may require you to actually learn about them before using them
  • Not exceptionally economical
  • Some materials feel a little flimsy

2020 Volvo XC60 Trims

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
T5 Momentum
2.0-liter Turbo Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
All-Wheel Drive
$40,150
T6 Momentum
2.0-liter Twincharged Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
All-Wheel Drive
$45,950
T5 R-Design
2.0-liter Turbo Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
All-Wheel Drive
$46,850
T5 Inscription
2.0-liter Turbo Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
All-Wheel Drive
$46,850
T6 R-Design
2.0-liter Twincharged Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
All-Wheel Drive
$52,650

XC60 Exterior

As the middle child of the XC-lineup, the XC60 has the most athletic profile, set in between it's lithe, nimble little sister, the XC40, and it's imposing, sophisticated, brute-in-a-suit brother, the XC90. Boasting the styling from 2019's refresh, the front end boasts the signature Thor's Hammer LED headlamps and daytime running lights that stretch all the way from the grille to the outer corners, with the Momentum and Inscription sharing a concave grille design with vertical chrome bars in place of the black mesh of the R-Design. Base models have 18-inch wheels as standard, whereas the R-Design and Inscription trims get 19-inch items in Matt Black and with black-accents, respectively. Our Inscription tester came with optional 20-inch signature alloys and cut a fine figure with the large panoramic roof, which ships as standard with even the base model. The overall exterior impression is one of confidence and class, with a hint of athletic ability, which culminates in chrome-tipped exhaust outlets, a modern rear with the automaker's name emblazoned underneath the rear window. Our tester also had Inscription-specific sills, illuminated door handles, and color-keyed folding exterior mirrors.

2020 Volvo XC60 Front Angle View CarBuzz
2020 Volvo XC60 Rear Angle View CarBuzz
2020 Volvo XC60 Rear-Facing View CarBuzz
See All 2020 Volvo XC60 Exterior Photos

Dimensions

Midsize SUVs should be large enough to provide space and comfort, but not as hulking as full-size family haulers. The XC60 stands 65.3 inches tall, and has an overall length of 184.6 inches. It's 83.3 inches wide, but, to us, felt much wider in parking spaces where we had to consider other car doors potentially knocking our tester. Set on a wheelbase of 112.8 inches, the XC60 is very much in the same range as German rivals from Audi, Mercedes, and BMW. The XC60 also offers a ground clearance of 8.5 inches, which isn't enough to really take on off-road trails, but was more than adequate for the rocky parking lot of the local dirt-bike track, and climbing the pavement outside the local soccer club. Curb weights start at 4,019 pounds for the base T5 Momentum in FWD configuration, and peak at 4,254 lbs for the T6 AWD cars - slightly heavier than both the BMW X3 and Audi Q5.

  • Length 184.6 in
  • Wheelbase 112.8 in
  • Height 65.3 in
  • Max Width 74.9 in
  • Front Width 65.1 in
  • Rear Width 65.2 in

Exterior Colors

Simple, clean Scandinavian design filters through to the available color palette, with Ice White as the standard no-cost option across the range. For $645, you can option your XC60 in Osmium Grey, Pine Grey, Denim Blue, Fusion Red, Onyx Black, Bright Silver, or the understated Crystal White Metallic, which was the particular shade our test car was decked out in. R-Design trims get access to a brighter, less staid Bursting Blue for $645, but do without the Denim Blue and Pine Grey options.

  • Ice White
  • Crystal White Metallic
  • Bright Silver Metallic
  • Osmium Grey Metallic
  • Onyx Black Metallic
  • Denim Blue Metallic
  • Pine Grey Metallic
  • Fusion Red Metallic
  • Bursting Blue Metallic

XC60 Performance

Various powertrains are available to the XC60 range, including hybrid options, reviewed separately. The T5 base engine comprises a four-cylinder turbocharged unit that produces 250 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque, while the T6 we had on test, straps an additional supercharger to the powertrain to kick out a much more satisfying 316 hp and 295 lb-ft. While neither of these offers kick-in-the-kidney acceleration, and the T5 motor is noticeably anemic for getting the large car up to speed, the T6 proved to be pleasant overall.

We use that term specifically - nothing about the XC60 gets the heart pumping, not the least of which is the power on tap - but that doesn't mean it's awful. Acceleration is more than sufficient for city driving, with take-offs feeling a little slow, especially in Eco and default Comfort mode. Switching to Dynamic brought a bit of a smirk to our faces at least, with a much more enthusiastic take-off when the fast pedal was nudged. Our tester responded eagerly to inputs and echoed claims that the T6 would get you from 0-60 mph in around 5.6 seconds. This doesn't blow anyone out of the water, and doesn't come close to the BMW X3's performance, but is slightly better than the 5.9 seconds offered by the Audi Q5, and is substantially quicker than the claimed 6.5-second sprint of the base T5 FWD, with AWD shaving a tenth of a second from that figure. Correctly equipped, the XC60 can also tow up to 3,500 lbs regardless of powertrain.

2020 Volvo XC60 Frontal Aspect CarBuzz
2020 Volvo XC60 Wheel CarBuzz
2020 Volvo XC60 Forward Vision CarBuzz

Engine and Transmission

Two powertrains are available on the non-hybrid XC60 range, both of which are based on Volvo's Drive-E modular engine architecture. Base models feature the T5 mill, a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-four with 250 hp and 258 lb-ft, and a choice of either front-wheel- or all-wheel-drive. One step up is the twin-charged T6, tweaked to deliver 316 hp and 295 lb-ft thanks to the fitment of both a turbo and an additional supercharger, and is only available with AWD. Both are paired to an eight-speed Aisin automatic transmission, which can be manually shifted, but really shouldn't be - we found manual shifting to be rather unimpressive. The default automatic is just fine, although the first few shifts from take-off seem a little lethargic - things improve drastically once you're up to speed, and the auto 'box responds appropriately on highways; overtaking and merging is seamless, much like the general feeling of the motor and transmission pairing. The XC60 does its thing intuitively, quietly, and efficiently. There's not much hum or burble to be heard in the cabin, and we never felt the engine was straining, but neither did it feel particularly lively.

Quick take-offs were best in Comfort mode where response was improved, although not instant - Dynamic mode, on the other hand, delivered immediate power, sending the SUV surging forward and the auto shifter responding with intent. The most contentious aspect of our test drive was the transmission and performance of the engine, with the passionate gearheads and track fans in the CarBuzz offices finding the XC60 rather bland. If you want more spice, you'll have to opt for one of the better performers - there's 400 hp from the Hybrid T8 and 415 hp from the Polestar variant. But, for the rest of the crew who appreciate the sense of quiet competence, adequate oomph from under the hood, and relaxed driving overall, the T6 Inscription was sublime.

We'd steer clear of the T5, though as the standard turbocharged setup simply doesn't feel up to the task of getting the XC60's heft up to speed. Within city confines, it's passable, but carrying full complements of passengers or traveling on the highway will need the more potent motor.

  • Engines
    2.0-liter Turbo Inline-4 Gas, 2.0-liter Twincharged Inline-4 Gas
  • Transmission
    8-Speed Automatic
  • Drivetrains
    AWD, FWD

Handling and Driving Impressions

The XC60 wants you to believe that there is something athletic and sporty under the metal, and, if you pick the right powertrain, you could almost be fooled into thinking this was true. But the standard dynamic chassis, power steering, and suspension on the Momentum and Inscription don't deliver on this promise - the ride is many things; comfortable, quiet, and smooth, even blissful with the optional adaptive air suspension box ticked, but it's not sporty.

Still, Volvo has managed to hit the bullseye in terms of day-to-day handling, providing superb road grip and great cornering with almost no body roll. Admittedly, our test car did have the adaptive air suspension included, which self-levels the car depending on drive mode and road surface. Slamming on the brakes gave us a little dip of the nose, which isn't uncommon in larger, high-riding vehicles, but the brakes inspired more confidence than we have had in some other midsize SUVs. Larger bumps, road scars, and even small potholes were nonissues for the XC60, even with the 20-inch alloy wheels, and asking the Volvo to crawl up the pavement was undertaken without a fuss.

The R-Design comes with a sport suspension, which firms things up and allows for some semblance of sporty play - but we're not sure we'd opt for that, as the standard setup is already a nice balance between firm and pillowy. With the air suspension added, there's really no sense of wafting about, but there's also no harsh, jarring reverberations from an overly-stiff suspension - an ideal recipe for the target market the XC60 is designed for.

XC60 Gas Mileage

Premium gasoline costs a pretty penny, and only the best is used to feed the XC60. The base T5 engine earns EPA ratings of 22/29/24 mpg in standard front-wheel-drive configuration. Opting for the all-wheel-drive version results in the same figures achieved by the T6 motor - 20/27/23 mpg. Notably, the BMW X3 in base configuration achieves far superior figures, and even the M40i variant offers 21/27/23 mpg. Audi's Q5 offers similar fuel economy to the XC60, with only highway figures dropping to 27 mpg, so it's not all bad for the Volvo.

All XC60's have a 18.8-gallon tank, which would allow for a range of 451 miles per tank when driven with restraint.

Our week with the XC60 showed figures slightly below EPA ratings at 20.8 mpg, but, admittedly, we went to town with the Dynamic drive mode and didn't particularly focus on economical driving. There's no reason to doubt that EPA figures are achievable when driven with care.

  • Fuel Tank Capacity
    18.5 Gallons
  • Fuel Economy
    City/Hwy: 22/29 mpg
* 2020 Volvo XC60 T5 Momentum FWD

XC60 Interior

One indisputable fact about Volvo is its ability to create interiors that provide luxury without being pretentious. As such, the cabin of the XC60 proved to be a delightful place to be - seating is comfortable and spacious, entry and exit is effortless, and the onboard tech is advanced yet user-friendly. Interior materials are of the highest quality, with the exception of very minor flimsy-feeling plastics here and there. The infotainment system and touchscreen display proved to be highly effective and easy to use too, with a little learning. Visibility, although excellent for front and side views, is not as brilliant in the back - but the equipped driver aids, including the surround-view camera, made it almost unnecessary to look back, anyway. Although not nearly as plush and opulent as the likes of Mercedes SUVs, we are particularly fond of the ergonomic, driver-centric Volvo design, and tip our hats to the tiny Swedish flags dotted about the cabin.

2020 Volvo XC60 Front Seating Area Volvo
2020 Volvo XC60 Gear Selector Volvo
2020 Volvo XC60 Center Console Volvo
See All 2020 Volvo XC60 Interior Photos

Seating and Interior Space

With space for five, the XC60 is the ideal vehicle for small or midsized families - although, three in the back is not the best for longer journeys, with the center tunnel impeding on foot and leg space. The rear middle seat should ideally be reserved for small children, but preferably left open to maximize on available space, as shoulder room can be a bit tight with three adults across. There is ample headroom at the back - with a six-foot-something adult easily seated on the rear outboard seats - and legroom is more than sufficient, too, even with the front seats pushed quite far back. The front seats on our test car were superb to say the least, firm and supportive, but contoured to prevent fatigue and slipping about; extended journeys won't be a problem, with lumbar settings helping to alleviate tight muscles. Massage function can be optioned on as well. The additional thigh bolsters and extensive power-adjustability mean any driver will find the ideal seating position, and two-way memory function also means the car automatically resets to your preferred settings upon entry.

Clever and conscientious design has always been the hallmark of Volvo, and as such, we were also suitably impressed with the built-in Booster seats that our test car came with, allowing you to fold up and click in the center cushion of the rear seats to create a lifted seat for children over the age of three. This comes courtesy of an optional add-on available to all models in the range.

  • Seating capacity
    5-seater
  • Front Leg Room 41.5 in
  • Front Head Room 38.0 in
  • Rear Leg Room 38.0 in
  • Rear Head Room 38.0 in

Interior Colors and Materials

As is expected of Volvo and this segment, the interior from the base model up echoes high-end, executive luxury, but without being gaudy - the Momentum comes with leather interior in Maroon Brown, Blond, Charcoal, or Amber, while the R-Design allows for only two choices: a combination of Nappa leather and woven fabric, available in Slate or Charcoal, the former being a new color for this model year. The R-Design also benefits from additional bolstering and support. Inscription cars have the same upholstery choices as the base model, but can option on ventilated, perforated Nappa leather additionally - our test car was kitted out in Charcoal Nappa, complemented by open-pore Driftwood trim which looked much nicer in the flesh than expected. Entry-spec models have the option of Iron Ore aluminum Decor or Linear Lime Deco inlays, while R-Design trims get Metal Mesh accents instead. All models get a leather gear shifter and leather-wrapped steering wheel, which felt really good in hand, while R-Design models get a thicker, sportier steering wheel. R-Design and Inscription models get gloss black buttons on the wheel, which looks great, but unfortunately, these become magnets for fingerprints.

Volvo's with lighter-toned interior styling tend to give off a unique vibe which we are quite partial to, but, for a change, the dark leather seemed to suit the tone of the XC60 and its professional-yet-personal nature. We did note that the dark door panels scuffed easily, however.

XC60 Trunk and Cargo Space

This segment has to straddle the line between practicality and sedan-like comfort, and as such, trunk and cargo space is important. For the XC60, there's 21.6 cubic feet behind the back row, which isn't nearly as much as rivals from Germany offer. With the seats down, there's 63.3 cubes available. There are hooks and latches all around, and a nifty side pocket with netting for smaller items that may roll around. We couldn't quite fit a teen's bicycle in the back with the seats upright, but a couple of suitcases, a skateboard, and the weekly shop was no problem. Our test car was also kitted out with a power liftgate and the ability to raise or lower the air suspension setup for easier loading, which is easily a favorite feature amongst our working mom crew. One negative was the retractable tonneau cover, which, although useful, does obstruct the view through the back window somewhat when unclipped in its top-most position.

Small item storage is adequate, with door pockets on all doors capable of holding bottles, a small nook ahead of the gear shifter for keys and coins, and a storage space with two size-adjustable cupholders in the center console - both of these can be hidden underneath a sliding cover, which in our car, was Driftwood and chrome accented. There's also a deep, but not particularly wide bin under the front armrest, and a tiny tray just behind it. The rear gets seatback pockets and a storage compartment, tray, and pop-out cupholders in the back armrest.

2020 Volvo XC60 Dashboard Closeup Volvo
2020 Volvo XC60 Rear Passenger Seats Volvo
2020 Volvo XC60 Seat Rows Volvo

XC60 Infotainment and Features

Features

The XC60 is crammed full of useful tech and convenience features that we didn't even know we needed in life - until now. Barring the wonderful (optional) perforated leather seats that both heat and cool at the touch of, well, the touchscreen, you can also make use of the Voice Control system by tapping the steering-mounted button, and simply stating "I'm cold", and watching the car up the climate control settings. Speaking of which, dual-zone is standard on the base-spec model, with four-zone climate control stock-fitted from the R-Design upwards. There's a large, configurable 12.3-inch driver information display, a power-operated tailgate, panoramic sunroof, and power-adjustable front seats on the Momentum, with the R-Design and Inscription adding navigation. Cruise control, front and rear collision mitigation, lane keep assist, park assist camera, a rear park assist feature, hill start and descent are already included on the base model, with Volvo's BLIS system (blind-spot monitoring with cross-traffic alert) added from the R-Design/Inscription trim, together with front parking assist. Pilot Assist, an added benefit of the Advanced Package available to R-Design and Inscription trims only, also adds a head-up display, adaptive cruise control, distance alert, lane follow, traffic sign recognition, and a 360-degree surround-view camera.

It's convenient, thoughtful features that really make the Volvo so endearing, including the ability to raise or lower the suspension to make cargo loading easier, and driver aids so simple to use you can literally learn to use them on the fly. The only feature we had a hiccup with was the optional parking assist that was equipped to our test car, which didn't seem to find parking spots in the wide open, and instead repeatedly identified occupied lots, and a spot with a Chevrolet Spark squeezed into the front half of it.

Infotainment

Easily one of our favorite aspects of the current Volvo range is the infotainment system. Centered on a portrait-oriented nine-inch screen, the user-friendly Sensus Connect system controls audio, phone, navigation, climate control and most elements and functions of the car. The entire setup is remarkably intuitive and so smartphone-like, that it took only a few seconds to grasp the basics, even for those unfamiliar with the setup. The menu items are simply and logically laid out, with some controls accessed on the steering wheel, too. We didn't like the rotary audio volume control, however, which detracted from an otherwise high-end experience, by feeling a little thin and plasticky. As with all touchscreens, and particularly so in family-oriented vehicles with kids, fingerprints do show up readily - even more so on such a large screen like this, which we found ourselves wanting to wipe down quite often.

Smartphone integration comes standard from the base model, including both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and HD and SiriusXM satellite radio functionality is stock-fitted too. The standard sound system on the base-level model features ten speakers, and on the higher trims, a 14-speaker Harman Kardon setup is fitted. There's an optional Bowers & Wilkins sound system with 15 speakers, too, which we found on our test car. For true audiophiles, it doesn't get much better than this - listening to the acoustic version of Hotel California by The Eagles on the Gothenburg Concert Hall setting proved to be a near-religious experience.

XC60 Problems and Reliability

While the 2020 XC60 is currently recall-free, the 2018 and 2019 models were subject to three recalls for issues ranging from an error in the GPS system not sending a location in the event of a crash, the tailgate lifting arms freezing and separating in certain conditions, and front seats with a missing bolt that may move in a collision. J.D. Power gave the 2020 XC60 a rating of 79 out of 100, however, and the manufacturer covers the range with a four-year/50,000 mile basic warranty and drivetrain cover, inclusive of 12-years of corrosion protection.

Warranty

  • Basic:
    4 Years \ 50,000 Miles
  • Drivetrain:
    4 Years \ 50,000 Miles
  • Corrosion:
    12 Years \ Unlimited Miles
  • Roadside Assistance:
    4 Years \ Unlimited Miles
  • Maintenance:
    3 Years \ 36,000 Miles

XC60 Safety

Although the NHTSA has not rated the current generation of XC60s, the IIHS felt the Swedish automaker's heritage of superior safety innovation was adequately expressed in the XC60, awarding the 2019 version with a Top Safety Pick award, and giving the 2020 model top scores of Good in all six crash test categories. Additionally, the front collision mitigation system was rated as Superior.

Key Safety Features

With a lot to live up to in terms of producing quality vehicles with top-notch safety standards, the XC60 comes suitably equipped. Seven airbags are standard, including dual front, front side, side curtain, and driver's knee airbags. Additional driver aids included from the entry-spec trim include cruise control, front and rear collision mitigation, a lane keeping aid (including lane departure warning and lane keep assist functions), a rearview camera, and rear parking sensors. From the mid-level R-Design, the suite is supplemented by BLIS (blind-spot information systems) featuring cross-traffic alert, and a front parking sensor is added. The Park Assist Pilot system can be optioned on for semi-autonomous parking, and a surround-view camera, a graphical head-up display, and Pilot Assist system with adaptive cruise control can be added, too. Both were equipped to our test car, and proved to be exceptionally effective when tested. The adaptive cruise control works seamlessly and will even provide steering assist around a curve in the road. We did have a few failed automatic parking attempts, however, but this seems like first-world problems to nitpick about.

Verdict: 🏁Is the 2020 Volvo XC60 a good SUV?

The 2020 Volvo XC60 is many things to many people - a family mover, a spacious executive car that doubles as a school-pick-up on the way home from the boardroom, or a gracious vehicle for the city dweller. What it's not is a sporty, performance SUV that will wow the crowd - and, as long as you choose it with that in mind, you won't be disappointed. The XC60 is spacious, comfortable, and quite possibly the most advanced in terms of technology in the segment; there's also something unique about Volvo and its ability to tap into professionalism while remaining quite personal, too. The quiet humility the XC60 exudes, and the myriad of features and conveniences - not to mention available driver aids - will appeal to those who are not looking to burn rubber, carve corners, and make a scene - Volvo's simply aren't designed for that. Everything about the range oozes solid, reliable practicality and safety - even the color schemes show the automaker's priority is on demure, under-the-radar effectiveness. So, for the young hot-head or performance enthusiast, the XC60 really won't do. For everyone else, there's just too much to appreciate.

🚘What's the Price of the 2020 Volvo XC60?

The XC60 range comes with two powertrain options, with the T5 engine being available in FWD or AWD, too. At entry point, the base level FWD T5 Momentum has an MSRP of $40,795. Opting for the AWD will add $2,300 to your bill, and choosing the 316-hp T6 engine will see a starting price of $46,595.

For a sportier look, the R-Design with the base T5 engine in FWD configuration costs $47,495, or $49,795 with AWD. T6 R-Design models up the price to $53,295. At the top of the range, the Inscription follows the same formula for pricing as the R-Design, with costs mirroring the mid-spec trim in its various configurations. These prices exclude a $995 destination charge and licensing, registration and taxes.

2020 Volvo XC60 Models

Three trim levels make up the 2020 XC60 range, namely the Momentum, R-Design, and Inscription, but with the various powertrain options, this translates to six configurations. While each of the three trims can be had with either T5 or T6 engines, only the T5 can be had with FWD (AWD optional), as all T6 engines come paired to AWD.

The base-spec Momentum comes with LED headlights and daytime running lights, a high-gloss grille, and color-keyed exterior mirrors. The tailgate is power-operated, and 18-inch five-spoke silver alloys fill the wheel arches. A panoramic roof is standard, too, and on the inside, dual-zone climate control, leather upholstery and power-adjustments for the front seats are included. Cruise control, a collision mitigation system, lane keeping aid, rearview camera with rear park assist, and a nine-inch infotainment screen paired to a ten-speaker high-performance sound system. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are stock-fitted from this trim.

R-Design cars ramp up the look and feel with dual-integrated tailpipes, 19-inch wheels, a black mesh grille, matching black exterior mirrors, and a sport chassis. The interior features limited upholstery options and specially bolstered seats, which are also unique to the trim, as well as a 14-speaker Harman Kardon sound system, a subwoofer, navigation, and four-zone climate control. Blind-spot monitoring also makes its way onto this trim, and front parking sensors are added.

The top-spec Inscription trim builds on the features of the R-Design, but does without the sport chassis and bespoke aesthetics - instead, the Inscription trim has exclusive bright exterior accents, unique interior inlays, and signature 19-inch wheels.

See All 2020 Volvo XC60 Trims and Specs

Additional Packages

Although there's a long list of available features and standalone options to add on, the most significant additions to the Momentum trim are by means of a $750 Heated Front Seats & Steering Wheel Package (which, on AWD models adds heated rear seats as heated front seats are standard), a $1,850 Multimedia Package (which adds navigation and the posh Harman Kardon sound system), and the Premium Package - this costs $2,150 and fits keyless entry, hands-free tailgate opening, blind spot monitoring, and front and rear park assist as well as a few other minor additions. For $2,500, the Advanced Package will also add LED cornering lights, Pilot Assist, a head-up display, and the surround-view camera. The rear seats can be heated for $425, or the integrated Booster seats added for $500.

On the R-Design, the Heated Front Seats & Steering Wheel Package (heated rears on AWD models), as well as the Advanced Package is available, too. Park Assist can be installed for $200, and the adaptive air suspension setup can be optioned on for $1,800. The brilliant Bowers & Wilkins premium sound system will set you back $3,200. These also apply to the Inscription trim, but the latter also gets access to the Luxury Package for $2,200, which allows for power-adjustment of the front seats' side bolsters and perches in ventilated Nappa.

🚗What Volvo XC60 Model Should I Buy?

With the Momentum being well-specced as is, the base model plus a few additional packages won't be a bad choice. However, if there's much more luxury and convenience to be found in the upper reaches of the range, we want it. So, as the driver aids, advanced features and pricing on the R-Design and Inscription are identical, we'd recommend the Inscription as it stays true to what the XC60 tries to be - this is not a sporty SUV, so decking it out to be one is a little illogical.

The more important question is which powertrain to opt for - if you're happy with short trips in traffic, the T5 will suffice. But we loved the T6 with its more, energetic engine and the corresponding drive modes that make it easier to customize your journey. Our test car really ticked all the boxes, and with the incredible Bowers & Wilkins sound system, additional driver aids, booster seats, air suspension, and heated/ventilated front seats, the only thing we'd happily leave off is the Park Assist Pilot, which was more trouble than it was worth. Our ideal build comes in at $64,545.

Check out other Volvo XC60 Styles

2020 Volvo XC60 Comparisons

BMW X3 BMW
Audi Q5
CompetitorHorsepowerMPGPrice (MSRP)
Volvo XC60250 hp22/29 mpg$40,150
BMW X3 248 hp25/29 mpg$41,950
Audi Q5 248 hp22/28 mpg$43,300

2020 Volvo XC60 vs BMW X3

One brand's best-seller against the other, the BMW X3 starts at $41,950 - only $1,155 more than the XC60. Also offering a variety of powertrains, the X3 comes to the party with either 248 hp/258 lb-ft or 382 hp/365 lb-ft. While the base engines on both the Volvo and the BMW are similarly-powered, the respective bigger engines are not, with the X3 coming out tops for available power. Additionally, the BMW offers much better fuel economy, too, and - as one would expect from the German manufacturer - boasts a far better ride, more engaging driving, and top-notch handling on the road. The X3 is also one-up on the XC60 for cargo space with the back row upright, offering more than seven cubic feet of space over and above the Volvo - but, with all seats folded down, the Volvo has 0.6 cubic feet more to play with. However, the interior is not quite as nice as the Volvo's, and the 2020 X3 is sans Android Auto - when it comes to available features, the Volvo definitely seems to have the advantage, although both vehicles are rather costly in default trim, and with packages added-on. Buying a car is a personal thing, and each person has their own measure of what a car is worth - choosing between these vehicles is equally subjective to what your purpose is. While the CarBuzz crew with a bit more Red Bull in their systems prefer the BMW, those who like the idea of comfortable cruising and safety would rather have the Volvo.

See BMW X3 Review

2020 Volvo XC60 vs Audi Q5

For neck-and-neck rivalry, the pairing between the XC60 and the Q5 from Audi's range offer very similar levels of performance, fuel economy, and reliability ratings. Power on the Audi comes in at 248 hp and 273 lb-ft, which matches up to the power made by the Volvo's T5 motor, but outdoes the Swedish SUV in terms of torque. As a result, the Q5 tows 900 lbs more than the Volvo; but, there is a little more room for choice in the Volvo range, with the option of upgrading to the T6 powertrain. There are those that will argue that this is not sufficient redemption for the otherwise bland and dull driving experience offered by the XC60 - and they may be right considering Audi's own SQ5 is available and is far better when it comes to being a performance SUV. If your goal is to have a fun-to-drive family car, the XC60 won't cut it. But then again, the Q5 isn't streets ahead in this regard either, outdoing the XC60 - but just barely. While the instinctual response may be to opt for the legendary German here, we're quite happy to give the Volvo the benefit of the doubt, as both have beautifully crafted interiors, loads of standard safety, and high-end infotainment systems. The Volvo is a little cheaper to start, too.

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