Volvo Cars simultaneously rolled out a new car and a new manufacturing facility the other day. That’s a double you don’t see happening very often. The new car in question is the S60 sedan, and the factory is the company’s first American manufacturing plant, located outside Charleston, South Carolina. The Swedes say the factory opening reinforces Volvo Cars’ commitment to the United States, and shows how serious they are about the new S60.
Volvo points out how the new S60 is the first Volvo car to be sold without a diesel engine. Volvo says this signals “the company’s industry-leading commitment to electrification and a future beyond the traditional combustion engine.” I say it also shows that Volvo doesn’t want to get caught up in a Scandinavian version of diesel-gate and end up with various board members being thrown into Saltvik Prison. (BTW, when looking up a funny Swedish prison name, I came across this: Prison Life in Scandinavia – Discover Scandinavia; seriously dude, an article from a Scandinavian tourist site about how great their prisons are!)
But it’s more than just that, Volvo seems very serious about this whole EV thing, saying that from 2019 all new models will be electrified.
Power & Performance
This new, American-built S60 will be propelled by the company’s turbo and supercharged T8 Twin Engine Plug-In Hybrid system. The internal combustion plant puts out 313 horsepower and the rear electric motor adds another 87 for a combined, healthy power output of 400 horsepower. Tasty!
In addition to the T8 version, the T5 front-wheel drive, and T6 all-wheel drive will also be available.
The new S60 shares the Scalable Product Architecture platform with other Volvo cars, such as the new V60 wagon and XC60.
Safety & Security
And, since this is a Volvo, it’s about as safe as a castle. There’s the City Safety system with Autobrake technology to assist the driver in avoiding potential collisions. Volvo says City Safety is the only system on the market that can recognize pedestrians, cyclists, and large animals and can engage auto braking to mitigate oncoming collisions.
There’s an optional Pilot Assist system to support you with steering, acceleration, and braking on well-marked roads up to 80 mph. The S60 also comes with Runoff Road Mitigation, Oncoming Lane Mitigation, and other steering assistance nannies.
Infotainment? Oh sure: The Sensus Connect system is compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and works via a tablet style touchscreen interface that combines car functions, navigation, connected services, and various entertainment apps.
Pricing & Availability
The T5 FWD, T6 AWD, and T8 Twin Engine Plug-In Hybrid will carry an MSRP of $35,800, $40,300, and $54,400 respectively. The new S60 will also be “sold” via Volvo’s new subscription service, Care by Volvo. The subscription deal means no down payment and a monthly flat rate. No worrying about maintenance and that sort of thing.
A well-equipped S60 T6 AWD Momentum is available for $775 a month through the program; an S60 T6 AWD R-Design can be had for $850 a month.
The new S60 also has a Polestar Engineered variant, which includes upgrades to the exterior and interior design, wheels, brakes, suspension, and engine control unit. This is the one you want to buy, but they will be extremely limited.
Tony Borroz has spent his entire life racing antique and sports cars. He is the author of Bricks & Bones: The Endearing Legacy and Nitty-Gritty Phenomenon of The Indy 500, available in paperback or Kindle format. His forthcoming new book The Future In Front of Me, The Past Behind Me will be available soon. Follow his work on Twitter: @TonyBorroz