2022 Volvo XC60 Review: First Drive

By Shivank Bhatt | on January 20, 2022 Follow us on Autox Google News

The refreshed Volvo XC60 gets a new heart & a few more tricks. We give it a once-over to see if it can still woo luxury car buyers. 

Volvo may not have the volumes or network of its big three German rivals, but it more than makes up for it with style, elegance, and luxury. From the entry-level XC40 and S60 to the flagship XC90 and S90, each Volvo, without a doubt, is in a class of its own. 

While all present-day Volvos are gob-smacking, it’s the XC60 that’s more popular than others. After its launch in 2017, the XC60 quickly went on to become the winningest product for Volvo. Soon after its arrival, it bagged the 2018 World Car of the Year award, which was followed by strong sales numbers, propelling it to become the best-selling Volvo product in the world. It lost that title only recently to the XC40, as the baby Volvo registered marginally higher numbers than the XC60 in the first half of 2021. Still, the XC60 remains as popular as ever. 

In India, the XC60 never really set the sales chart on fire though, but it wasn’t a dud either. And now, in the face of fresher (and cleaner) competition, Volvo has decided to give it a once-over. So, what we have now on sale is the 2022 XC60.

What’s New?

The diesel is gone, and in its place comes a new 247bhp and 350Nm-developing 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-petrol engine with a 48-volt mild-hybrid system. There’s a shinier front grille, a new bumper design (if you care to notice, that is), and newly designed 19-inch alloy wheels. The exhaust pipes are now hidden under the rear bumper to give the XC60’s derrière a seamless look. The changes are minimal, of course, but it also means that the XC60 is as stunning as ever.

2022 Volvo XC60 Infotainment Touchscreen

Inside, everything remains more or less the same, albeit the 9-inch touchscreen system is now powered by Google – think of it as an in-built Android Auto. There’s a four-year subscription, and the screen works flawlessly. The 12.3-inch digital driver display shows Google Maps/navigation directly in front of your eyes – it’s a cool and convenient addition. Surprisingly, there’s no Apple CarPlay or Android Auto connectivity available as yet. That aside, the cabin is a work of art. The seats are very comfortable, and the interior definitely feels more special than its direct rivals. There’s just one fully-loaded variant on offer. 

Better to Drive than the Diesel?

If you care about the environment, well, then the answer is a resounding yes! But in terms of outright grunt, the new petrol powertrain does leave you wanting more. You no longer get the sudden mid-range kick of the 480Nm-producing diesel unit. That said, the petrol has a clear advantage in terms of refinement, and thanks to mild-hybrid tech, it’s more responsive at city speeds. The power delivery is smooth and linear, but it lacks urgency. Even when you put your foot down, the pace builds up rather leisurely. 

The 8-speed torque converter is tuned for comfort too, and it doesn’t like to be rushed into doing things. No paddle-shifters are on offer, albeit you can shift manually. It’s not meant to be driven hurriedly though. The whole point of this SUV is comfort and luxury, so there’s no need to drive it like a maniac.
  
When driven leisurely, you’ll also see the powertrain return amazing fuel efficiency – with a full tank (71 litres), it showed a range of 860kms during the test. However, the moment you start thrashing the motor, you’ll see a huge drop in fuel efficiency. But, then, that’s always the case when you put small turbo petrol engines in heavy vehicles.

2022 Volvo XC60 Front Quarter Motion

As a handler, the XC60’s body controls are taut and predictable. The steering offers decent feel and feedback, and it goes around corners nonchalantly. The body roll is prominent though, but then it’s not supposed to be driven like a go-kart. The ride quality is phenomenal, though. At low speeds, the ride is absorbent and impeccably quiet. The XC60 successfully isolates you from the broken surfaces of the world, as you’d expect from a ₹60+ lakh SUV. High-speed stability is good, but there’s a lot of vertical movement at triple-digit speeds on less-than-perfect roads. You’ll also notice excessive forward pitch while braking at high speeds. There's no adaptive dampers or air suspension on offer, which means that there’s not a lot in terms of adjustability.

Verdict

With the XC60, you get the feeling that it’s a luxury SUV aimed at discerning customers. It’s made with a single-minded focus on comfort, style, and luxury. Sure, the XC60 is not perfect in every way, but it’s the sort of vehicle that’s deeply desirable regardless of its flaws. And, honestly, when a car soothes your senses while driving and looks this good, anyone would be willing to shut their eyes to its minor flaws.

  • Volvo XC60 B5 AWD

Engine: 1,959cc / Four-Cylinder / Turbocharged / 48V ISG

Transmission: 8-Speed Automatic / All-Wheel Drive

Power: 247bhp @ 5,400 – 5,700rpm

Torque: 350Nm @ 1,800 – 4,800rpm

Price: ₹61.90 Lakh (Ex-Showroom)

X-Factor: The Volvo XC60’s stunning design, impeccable levels of luxury, and soothing driving experience make it irresistible.

Pros           
• Comfort
• Luxury
• Design

Cons
• The petrol engine is not as punchy as that of the rivals

Read more:

2021 Volvo XC60 and S90 launched 

2021 Volvo S60, Track Test

Tags: Volvo Volvo XC60 XC60

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Volvo XC60 [2021-2022] Model Image
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