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New car review

Volvo V60 Cross Country review

Is the Volvo V60 Cross Country a car you really can drive well off the beaten track?

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Design
8
Comfort
8
Driving experience
8
Value for money
8
Safety
9

Summary

The Volvo V60 Cross Country adds extra versatility to an already impressive estate car. Few SUVs will tackle challenging conditions as effectively.

Summary

The Volvo V60 Cross Country adds extra versatility to an already impressive estate car. Few SUVs will tackle challenging conditions as effectively.
 

Inside the Volvo V60 Cross Country

We described the premium quality of the interior in our V60 review last year and it is replicated in the Cross Country – comfortable seats, loads of room in front or back and quality surfaces. You sit slightly higher than in the stock car, but not so much as to be very different, and it’s all as cosseting as one expects in today’s Volvos.

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Adding all-wheel-drive makes no difference to the practicality of the car. The boot is still a  gargantuan 529 litres, knocking all rivals into touch. It jumps to 1,441 litres with the rear seats down and offers a thoroughly practical flat space easily accessed through the powered tailgate. And there is some useful under-floor storage for valuables too.

The controls feel high quality to the touch and easy to use. However having previously much praised the Sensus touchscreen infotainment system, we are asking a few questions now. We still like the portrait format, but after many hours with an identical system during a very long journey in a Volvo XC40, we find that Sensus can be less than intuitive at times…

Driving the Volvo V60 Cross Country

As mentioned, there is currently just one Cross Country propulsion option. This is a D4 diesel of 190hp and 400Nm or torque, and Volvo proudly tells us that the V60 is the very last new model that the brand will launch with diesel engines, so this is the end of the line.

So it’s no surprise that, sometime in 2020, the Cross Country will also be offered with the T5 petrol unit. We know, too, that the V60 will get some form of electric propulsion because Volvo has promised that its much-vaunted move to electrification will extend to all of its model lines. What we don’t know yet is whether that will include the Cross Country.

For now, the diesel offers everything that we expected after driving with it in the standard V60 (and many other Volvos). It is a very efficient unit, freely giving of its torque, and equally highly refined, the only noticeable noise occurring when one first presses the start button, and that quickly muffled.

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Plentiful torque most matters in off-road situations, and on the launch event a confident Volvo proudly demonstrated that this car really can leave the tarmac far behind. It’s not a proper off-roader, but it will tackle more than a grassy field – the test route across a country estate included muddy tracks and rocky descents and provided plenty of opportunity to demonstrate the effectiveness of the off-road driving mode and hill-descent control.

Of course, most Cross Country drivers will spend little or no time tackling such challenges but a whole lot of time on motorways, and in such a situation progress is totally effortless. The suspension is actually tuned for slightly more comfort than the standard model, while the raised ride height makes absolutely no difference to the impressive ride quality.

 
 

Effortless sums up much of the V60 Cross Country’s on-the-road performance. Guided through a series of challenging corners it won’t excite, but it will drive through them in an almost dismissive fashion.

Summary

Volvo believes the Cross Country will take around 10% of V60 sales. For a fleet buyer the £201 and up benefit-in-kind tax rate is £50 more than an entry-level V60 Momentum with the less powerful D3 diesel.

PCP charges are around £40 a month more, starting from £319, and residual values are quoted as class-leading with the car retaining 48% of its value after three years and 30,000 miles (40% at 60,000 miles).

With such figures, the V60 Cross Country could be a tempting proposition. Compared to its stock sister it offers extra ability that will not just be useful off the beaten track – AWD and a raised ride height are handy in the extreme weather and flooded roads that are becoming a feature of British winters.

Few ‘normal’ cars will tackle such challenging conditions as effectively as the Cross Country.

Key specifications

Make & modelVolvo V60 Cross CountrySkoda Octavia ScoutAudi A4 allroad
SpecificationD4 AWD2.0 TDI 184PS 4×4 DSG2.0 TDI quattro S tronic
Price (on-road)£38,270£30,335 (Scout range starts £27,230)£38,415 (Currently being phased out)
Engine2.0-litre diesel2.0-litre diesel2.0-litre diesel
Gearbox8-speed auto6-speed auto7-speed auto
Power190 hp184 hp190 hp
Torque400 Nm380 Nm400 Nm
0-62mph8.2 sec8.4 sec7.8 sec
Top speed130 mph130 mph137 mph
Fuel economy (combined)42.8-47.9 mpg (WLTP)58.9 mpg (NEDC)57.6 mpg (NEDC)
CO2 emissions143 g/km (WLTP)135 g/km (NEDC)128 g/km (NEDC)
Insurance groupTBA24E27E
Euro NCAP rating5 stars (2018)5 stars (2013)5 stars (2015)

 

Design
8
Comfort
8
Driving experience
8
Value for money
8
Safety
9

Summary

The Volvo V60 Cross Country adds extra versatility to an already impressive estate car. Few SUVs will tackle challenging conditions as effectively.
Andrew Charman
Andrew Charman
Andrew is a road test editor for The Car Expert. He is a member of the Guild of Motoring Writers, and has been testing and writing about new cars for more than 20 years. Today he is well known to senior personnel at the major car manufacturers and attends many new model launches each year.

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Volvo V60 Cross Country review 5

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