More fun than it looks. Good safety ratings/features.
Rear Passenger Room
Volvo has a range of family-friendly vehicles that are stylish, safe, and technologically-advanced. Offerings like the 2019 Volvo V60 are much different than the old boxy wagons of the past. However, the Swedish automaker is still one of the best if safety is your number one concern. Volvo remains one of the industry leaders in this area, and has loaded the new V60 with plenty of safety features.
This week, we drove the 2019 Volvo V60 T6 Momentum with all-wheel drive.
The Volvo V60 is fully redesigned for the 2019 model year. The new V60 is built on Volvo’s Scalable Product Architecture, which underpins 90 and 60 Series models. The more sporty R-Design and the more luxurious Inscription trims are available for 2019.
Features & Options: Convenience & Safety
Standard features for the base Momentum T6 ($43,400) include 18-inch wheels, automatic LED headlights, automatic high beams, heated and rain-sensing wipers, roof rails, and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. On the inside, drivers receive dual-zone automatic climate control, leather upholstery, heated 10-way power-adjustable front seats, and a panoramic sunroof. Among the convenience features: keyless ignition, a hands-free liftgate, rearview camera, power-folding rear headrests, and power-split-folding rear seats with a center pass-through.
Tech features include the Sensus infotainment system with a nine-inch touchscreen and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto compatibility. Bluetooth connectivity, streaming audio, satellite radio, and two USB ports each pair well with the 10-speaker audio system.
Volvo’s standard City Safety technology detects other vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists, and large animals like moose and deer, and can engage auto-braking to mitigate oncoming collisions. City Safety will also avoid or mitigate collisions with oncoming vehicles at intersections. Other safety features include steering support, oncoming lane mitigation, lane keeping aid, and run-off road protection. The Pilot Assist system, which supports drivers with steering, acceleration, and braking on well-marked roads up to 80 mph, also receives an update.
This tester came with the optional FOUR-C active chassis ($1,000) and 19-inch alloy wheels ($800). Total MSRP including destination: $46,195. By comparison, the 2019 Volvo V60 starts at $38,900 for the T5 front-wheel drive; $43,400 for the T6 all-wheel drive.
Interior Highlights: More Connectivity, But Less Intuitive
The Momentum may be the base trim, but it still features a stylish interior with premium materials. The overall ambiance is one of understated luxury, accompanied by some Swedish flair. Interior standouts include the heated leather seats and steering wheel, the panoramic sunroof, and automatic climate control. We especially liked the Art Deco aluminum inlays that give the cabin a more upscale feel.
Volvo improved the Sensus infotainment system for 2019. The quicker response times are necessary if you’re going to make use of the many entertainment applications like Spotify, Pandora, Baidu, and TuneIn. While the updates and increase in connectivity are welcome, we thought the tablet-style Sensus system wasn’t as intuitive as other vehicles we’ve tested.
The front seats are very comfortable in the 2019 Volvo V60. However, the middle seat in the rear has a high floor, which means passengers sitting there will have limited foot room. Volvo did increase overall cargo space; the V60 now has 23.2 cubic feet of space when the rear seats are upright; 50.9 cubic feet with the back row folded. The 40/20/40-split design makes the best use of the space available and offers some flexibility for carrying additional cargo.
Engine & Fuel Mileage Specs
The new V60 comes with a 2.0-liter, in-line four Drive-E engine paired to an eight-speed automatic. With its traverse all-wheel drive layout, the V60 T6 creates 316 horsepower and 295 lb-ft. of torque via bi-charging. The supercharger on top of the turbo makes this a quick family hauler! In fact, with this engine, the V60 hits 60 mph in under six seconds. EPA fuel-mileage estimates come in at 21/31 city/highway and 25 combined mpg.
The T5 variant features an in-line four with a turbo only. With front-wheel drive, fuel economy improves to 24/36 city/highway and 28 combined mpg, although horsepower drops to 250.
Driving Dynamics: More Enjoyable Than It Looks
The 2019 Volvo V60 provides the convenience and utility of a hatchback, but the dynamics of a sedan. The V60 is fun to drive, and if we didn’t know it was a wagon, it would have fooled us into thinking it was a sports car. The 2.0-liter bi-charged engine has plenty of power, making it fun for the daily commute. The selectable drive modes add to the enjoyment.
Furthermore, the all-wheel drive T6 is a good choice for those who live on rough or unpaved roads, and in cold and snowy climates. It handled well in the snow and ice we encountered this week in the Denver area.
Perhaps most importantly for families, the Volvo V60 was named a Top Safety Pick by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Throughout the city and around the steeper mountain curves, the big disc brakes on all four corners brought us to a quick stop when needed. But knowing Volvo’s City Safe system can detect larger animals, we had extra peace of mind traveling through the less populated areas outside of Denver.
Conclusion: Good Choice Overall
For young, active families who don’t need a ton of cargo space, the 2019 Volvo V60 is a good choice. You can take this wagon through the snow and the cabin is comfortable and quiet. Overall, despite it being a wagon, we would rate the driving experience on the high side, an added bonus if you’re an enthusiast.
Denis Flierl has invested over 25 years in the automotive industry in a variety of roles. All of his firsthand reviews are archived on our test drives page. Follow Denis on Twitter: @CarReviewGuy
2019 Volvo V60 Gallery
Photos: Volvo Car USA, LLC. (Additional models and trim levels shown).