Safety Technology

Volvo Updates 90 Series Models With New Tech And Six-Speed Manual

Because who doesn't want a range topper with a stick shift?

Mercedes reserves the letter S to designate its range toppers while BMW and Audi reserve the numbers 7 and 8 to do the same. Meanwhile, Volvo uses the number 90 to distinguish its best and brightest automotive offerings, but unlike the three German automakers, the Swedish automaker is struggling to keep its sales numbers on par. To help fight the Germans, Volvo has just given its 90 Series cars, which include the V90 wagon and its Cross Country counterpart, S90 sedan, and XC90 SUV, a huge makeover.

The upgrades focus on new powertrain options, connectivity, and a Volvo staple, safety. For the update, Volvo has decided to include Android Auto, complementing Apple CarPlay that it already offers in its range. The other infotainment accessible upgrade includes a Tesla-like over the air update system for the navigation system, meaning that new Volvos are now adaptable to the changing infrastructure of the world’s roads and won’t send drivers down paths that are no longer viable. Taking advantage of the new connectivity are Volvo’s newest suite of safety systems. Slippery Road Alert collects road data from cars that have already traversed the road and relay it to the driver, warning them if road conditions are less than stellar.

Hazard Light Alert works similarly, warning a driver if a car ahead has activated their hazard lights, usually an indicator that there is a car stopped ahead in the road. Volvo owners impatient at the fact that most motorists won’t have the technology to relay the information to their cars can just use Waze like the rest of the world. On the powertrain end of things, Volvo has introduced a few new Drive-E powertrain variants. The D3 four-cylinder diesel engine is now available with either a six-speed manual (thanks Volvo) or a six-speed auto, both of which can be had with all-wheel drive. To top it off, Volvo introduced an attractive shade of Maple Brown to the V90 and S90. Hopefully this helps Volvo gain traction, figuratively and literally.

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