2020 Volvo XC60

2020 Volvo XC60
2020 Volvo XC60 Three Quarter Rear Right Dynamic
2020 Volvo XC60 Front Seating Area 1
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2020 Volvo XC60 Test Drive Review: Practicality Perfected

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:

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2020 Volvo XC60 Changes: What’s The Difference vs The 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

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.

Best Deals on 2020 Volvo XC60

2020 Volvo XC60 Trims

See trim levels and configurations:

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
T5 Momentum
2.0L Turbo Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
All-Wheel Drive
T6 Momentum
2.0L Twincharged Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
All-Wheel Drive
T5 R-Design
2.0L Turbo Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
All-Wheel Drive
T5 Inscription
2.0L Turbo Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
All-Wheel Drive
T6 R-Design
2.0L Twincharged Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
All-Wheel Drive
See All 2020 Volvo XC60 Trims and Specs

2020 XC60 Exterior

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


  • 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

  • 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

2020 XC60 Performance

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

Engine and Transmission

  • Engines
    2.0L Turbo, 2.0L Turbo Inline-4 Gas, 2.0L Twincharged, 2.0L 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.

2020 XC60 Interior

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

Seating and Interior Space

  • Seating capacity
  • Front Leg Room 41.5 in
  • Front Head Room 38.0 in
  • Rear Leg Room 38.0 in
  • Rear Head Room 38.0 in

2020 XC60 Trunk and Cargo Space

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

2020 XC60 Safety and Reliability


  • 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

US NHTSA Crash Test Result

  • Overall Rating
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
  • Side Crash Rating
  • Rollover Rating

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 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

Audi Q5
CompetitorHorsepowerMPGPrice (MSRP)
Volvo XC60247 hp23/30 mpg$43,450
BMW X3 248 hp23/29 mpg$46,200
Audi Q5 201 hp23/29 mpg$44,200

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.

See Audi Q5 Review
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