Specification includes Sensus Navigation, Panoramic Sunroof, Park Assist Pilot with 360 Parking Camera, Blind Spot Information System, Front and Rear Park Assist Sensors, Smartphone Integration with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Winter Pack with Heated Windscreen, Heated Front and Rear Seats, Heated Steering Wheel. Powered Child Locks, 7 Seats, Pilot Assist with Adaptive Cruise Control, Speed Limiter and Lane Keeping Aid, Heated Front Seats, Four Zone Climate Controlled Air Conditioning with Air Conditioning for the 3rd Row and Air Quality System, Privacy Glass, Keyless Entry, Start and Drive, Integrated Sun Curtains to Rear Doors, Integrated Roof Rails, 20 Inch Alloy Wheels with Tyre Pressure Monitoring System, Front Seat Cushion Extensions, Auxiliary Fuel Fired Heater for Cabin Pre Conditioning, DAB Radio, Bluetooth Telephone and Audio Streaming, USB Ports, Volvo On Call With App, ISOFIX Child Seat Fixings and much more. Please call for further information and to arrange your viewing.
We pride ourselves in only providing vehicles of the highest of standards - all vehicles are taken through a pre-delivery inspection and are fully HPI checked for your peace of mind. We price our vehicles for sale on the basis of age, condition and mileage. The vehicles for sale may have previously been used for business or hire purposes and so may have had multiple users. Where we hold documents relating to vehicle history, these are available for inspection on request and we are happy to address any specific queries before you view or make an offer to purchase any vehicle.
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If you love tech and need a large 7 seat SUV, the XC90 T8 Recharge is the car you need. With a Plug In Hybrid engine this will also give you more economy and range. A fantastic SUV indeed!
Emissions and Fuel
* Price does not include road fund license
Service Log Book
Dark tinted windows for rear side windows and cargo area, Front and rear power windows, Heated washer nozzles, Rain sensor with automatic windscreen wiper activation, Rear wash/wipe with intermittent wipe setting
Hill descent control, Hill start assist, Power parking brake with auto hold function, Stability and Traction Control with Spin control, Engine Drag Control and Corner Traction Control, Vehicle deceleration control with Anti-lock Brake System, Electronic Brake Distribution and Emergency Brake Assist
Electric rear axle drive, Touring chassis
Bluetooth hands free telephone connection, Voice activated control for key functions, Volvo on call
Adjustable steering wheel force, Drive mode settings, Driver alert control with lane keeping aid, Driver assistance (pilot assist and adaptive cruise control), Front and rear park assist, Oncoming Lane Mitigation, Speed limiter, Speed sensitive steering
7m Charge Cable with 3 Pin Plug, 7m Type 2/mode 3 charge cable, Handsfree power tailgate opening and closing
12.3" Active TFT crystal driver's instrument display, 9" centre console portrait touch screen, Driver awareness - Blind spot information system with steer assist, cross traffic alert with autobrake and rear collision warning and mitigation, Sensus navigation with European mapping and traffic information, Service interval indicator, Trip computer
Auto dimming interior + exterior mirrors, Electric folding and heated door mirrors, High gloss black door mirrors
Metal mesh inlays, Tailored Instrument Panel and Door Tops with Contrast Stitching
DAB Radio (Digital Audio Broadcasting), Steering wheel remote infotainment controls
Exterior Body Features
Body colour bumpers, Dual integrated exhaust pipes with high gloss black surround, High gloss black Deco lower front bumper, High gloss black lower rear valance, High gloss black mesh front grille with surround, High gloss black window surround, Integrated roof rails in high gloss black, Recharging port located in nearside front wing, Roof antenna, Roof spoiler, Visible VIN plate
Adaptive brake lights with high level LED brake lights, Automatic headlight levelling system, Automatic LED Headlights + Active high beam incorporating daytime running lights, Home safe and approach lighting, Puddle lights
4 Zone electronic climate control + cooled glovebox, B Pillar ventilation
12V socket front tunnel console, rear passenger compartment and cargo area, A-pillar parking ticket holder, Bright metal luggage threshold, Cargo divider with grocery bag holder, Centre console cupholders and storage, Charcoal headlining, Driver's side lower dashboard storage compartment, Front and rear door pocket and front cupholder illumination, Height/reach adjustable steering column, Illuminated tailgate, Illumination lockable glovebox compartment, Integrated sun curtains in rear doors, Load protection net, Lower dashboard, tunnel console, Lower door panel in blond, Outboard armrest with cupholder and storage for third row passengers, Recharge aluminium tread plates, Semi automatic load cover, Sports leather gear knob, Sports pedals, Steering wheel audio controls, Underfloor cargo storage
Ambient door and instrument panel lighting, Front footwell and side step illumination, Illuminated luggage compartment, Multicolour theatre lighting, Rear footwell and side step illumination
7 three point seatbelts, City safety includes pedestrian, cyclist and large animal detection and front collision warning with full auto brake, Drivers knee airbag, Dual stage Driver/Passenger Airbags, First aid kit, Front seats SIPS airbags, IC (Inflatable Curtains) - Full Length, Passenger airbag cut-off switch, Road sign information display, Run off Road Mitigation, Run off Road Protection, Seatbelt reminder and pretensioners for all seats, SIPS (Side Impact Protection System), Slippery road and hazard light alert, Tyre pressure monitoring system, Warning triangle, WHIPS whiplash protection system - front
Front headrests, Front seat cushion extensions, Heated front seats, Power driver seat with multi directional lumbar support and memory for seat and exterior mirrors, Power folding 2nd row headrests, Power passenger seat with multi directional lumbar support and memory, Rear headrests, Three 2nd row individual folding passenger seats with fore/aft adjustment, Two 3rd row individual folding passenger seats
Anti-theft alarm including immobiliser/volume sensor + level sensor, Care key with user defined top speed, Key integrated remote control central locking + fuel flap with deadlocking system and auto open/close power windows, Keyless drive (includes keyless entry and keyless start) with remote tag, Locking wheel nuts, Private locking for glovebox and tailgate
8 speed automatic transmission with start/stop + manual change functions, All wheel drive system
Illuminated vanity mirrors + ticket holder
Wheels - Spare
Tyre sealant kit + 12v compressor
|Alternative Fuel Qualifying:||True|
|Badge Engine CC:||2.0|
|Based On ID:||N|
|Coin Description:||T8 Recharge PHEV|
|Coin Series:||R DESIGN|
|Insurance Group 1 - 50 Effective January 07:||44E|
|Man Corrosion Perforation Guarantee - Years:||8|
|Manufacturers Paintwork Guarantee - Years:||3|
|NCAP Adult Occupant Protection %:||N|
|NCAP Child Occupant Protection %:||N|
|NCAP Overall Rating - Effective February 09:||N|
|NCAP Pedestrian Protection %:||N|
|NCAP Safety Assist %:||N|
|Service Interval Frequency - Months:||12|
|Service Interval Mileage:||18000|
|Standard manufacturers warranty - Mileage:||60000|
|Standard manufacturers warranty - Years:||3|
|Vehicle Homologation Class:||M1|
|Battery Capacity in kWh:||11.6|
|Battery Charge Type 1 kW:||2.3|
|Battery Charge Type 1 Percentage:||0-100|
|Battery Charge Type 1 Time (Minutes):||300|
|Battery Charge Type 2 kW:||3.7|
|Battery Charge Type 2 Percentage:||0-100|
|Battery Charge Type 2 Time (Minutes):||180|
|Battery Charge Type 3 kW:||7|
|Battery Charge Type 3 Percentage:||0-100|
|Battery Charge Type 3 Time (Minutes):||180|
|Coupler/Connector Type:||Type 2|
|Standard manufacturers Battery warranty - Mileage:||100000|
|Standard manufacturers Battery warranty - Years:||8|
|WLTP - AER (km) - Comb - Max:||38|
|WLTP - AER (km) - Comb - Min:||43|
|WLTP - AER (miles) - Comb - Max:||23.6|
|WLTP - AER (miles) - Comb - Min:||26.7|
|WLTP - EC AC Weighted (kWh/100km) - Comb - Max:||18.6|
|WLTP - EC AC Weighted (kWh/100km) - Comb - Min:||16.8|
|WLTP - EC AC Weighted (miles/kWh) - Comb - Max:||3.4|
|WLTP - EC AC Weighted (miles/kWh) - Comb - Min:||3.7|
|WLTP - Equivalent AER (km) - Comb:||47|
|WLTP - Equivalent AER (km) - Comb - Max:||44|
|WLTP - Equivalent AER (km) - Comb - Min:||49|
|WLTP - Equivalent AER (miles) - Comb:||30|
|WLTP - Equivalent AER (miles) - Comb - Max:||27.3|
|WLTP - Equivalent AER (miles) - Comb - Min:||30.4|
|Standard Euro Emissions:||EURO 6|
|WLTP - CO2 Weighted (g/km) - Comb:||63|
|WLTP - CO2 Weighted (g/km) - Comb - Max:||76|
|WLTP - CO2 Weighted (g/km) - Comb - Min:||61|
|Engine Layout:||FRONT TRANSVERSE|
|Fuel Delivery:||TURBO DIRECT INJECTION|
|Number of Valves:||16|
|WLTP - FC Weighted (l/100km) - Comb - Max:||3.4|
|WLTP - FC Weighted (l/100km) - Comb - Min:||2.7|
|WLTP - FC Weighted (mpg) - Comb - Max:||83.1|
|WLTP - FC Weighted (mpg) - Comb - Min:||104.5|
|0 to 62 mph (secs):||5.8|
|Engine Power - BHP:||390|
|Engine Power - KW:||287|
|Engine Power - PS:||True|
|Engine Power - RPM:||6000|
|Engine Torque - LBS.FT:||295|
|Engine Torque - MKG:||40.8|
|Engine Torque - NM:||400|
|Engine Torque - RPM:||2200|
|Emissions Test Cycle:||WLTP|
|RDE Certification Level:||RDE 2|
|Tyre Size Front:||275/45 R20|
|Tyre Size Rear:||275/45 R20|
|Tyre Size Spare:||TYRE REPAIR KIT|
|Wheel Style:||5 SPOKE|
|Wheel Type:||20" ALLOY|
|Height (including roof rails):||N|
|Width (including mirrors):||2140|
|Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres):||70|
|Gross Vehicle Weight:||2980|
|Luggage Capacity (Seats Down):||1816|
|Luggage Capacity (Seats Up):||316|
|Max. Loading Weight:||730|
|Max. Roof Load:||100|
|Max. Towing Weight - Braked:||2400|
|Max. Towing Weight - Unbraked:||750|
|No. of Seats:||7|
|Turning Circle - Kerb to Kerb:||11.8|
Volvo's XC90 showcases cutting edge technology in Recharge T8 plug-in hybrid guise. Jonathan Crouch drives it out in improved form.
Volvo must adapt to survive as an independent car maker. Proof of that has been delivered by this model, now usefully improved, the XC90 Recharge T8 Plug-in hybrid. It's a family-sized luxury seven-seat SUV for a very different world.
The second generation XC90 was a car that fans of the brand anticipated impatiently and what we got when it arrived was worth the wait. Absolutely everything about this MK2 model was fundamentally new and engineered to set fresh class standards. Nowhere is this more evident than with the Recharge T8 Plug-in hybrid petrol/electric variant we're going to look at here. Here, you get the potential of supermini-style running costs. On top of that, there's the sort of proper full-sized seven-seat versatility that few rivals can credibly offer and the kind of cool, authentic Scandinavian charm we haven't really seen from a new Volvo in a very long time. It all sounds promising doesn't it? Time to put this car to the test.
The 'Recharge T8' badging applied to this car denotes its petrol/electric powertrain and plug-in hybrid usability. In fact there are three engines if you're going to be pedantic about it and count the 25bhp starter motor/generator that pitches in from time to time to smooth any gaps in torque delivery between the two main power sources. One of these is the 303hp turbocharged/supercharged petrol unit borrowed from the old conventional T6 model that drives the front wheels. In an XC90 T8 though, it's assisted by a separate engine at the back, an 87bhp electric motor powered by a battery pack neatly packaged away in the transmission tunnel. It's all enough to deliver a set of stats that it's rather hard to get your head around. So, 386hp and 62mph from rest in just 5.8s - the kind of storming performance you'd get in this segment from, say, a Porsche Cayenne S - matched with real world fuel and CO2 readings that could potentially equal those of a frugal supermini. That's assuming you select the most performance-orientated of the five driving settings that T8 owners are offered - the 'Power' mode that sees both petrol and electric units permanently working together. Alternatively, there are four other drive choices: a 'Hybrid' setting that sees the two engines cutting in and out as necessary: an 'AWD' mode that gives you permanent 4x4 traction off road: plus a 'Pure electric' setting that only uses the battery power and can take you up to 30.4 miles (more than most people's daily commuting distance) on a single charge. There's even a 'Save' option so that on a longer trip, you can hold that charge until you get to the city driving you might have to do at the end of the journey.
The look of this second generation XC90, according to its exterior design manager Anders Gunnarson, needed to be 'timeless'. If, like its predecessor, its model life must stretch across the decades, then you can certainly see why. Hence the considerable depth of thought that's clearly gone into a sense of style reflective of brand values both old and new. So many large luxury SUVs appear bulky and intimidating: this isn't one of them. On the outside, this refreshed XC90 offers subtle upgrades to the original award-winning exterior design, such as new wheels, exterior colours and a revised front grille, among other details. Otherwise, things are much as before, with a sculpted bonnet flowing into LED front headlights with a distinctive so-called 'Hammer of Thor' design. Up-front, the cabin is simple, elegant, very uncluttered and dominated by a huge infotainment colour touchscreen that's presented portrait-style on the centre console. We like the technical niceties too: the CleanZone interior air quality system for example. This automatically switches to recirculation mode if outside conditions change - say in a polluted city centre or when you enter a smoky tunnel. Middle row passengers get individual seats that slide and recline for greater comfort on longer journeys. And even third row folk get decent standards of space. Unlike a rival Audi Q7 TFSIe, you can have third row seating in this XC90 T8 model. Out back, there's 397-litres of luggage space with all the seats in place, or 775-litres up to the windowline with the third row folded.
The on the road price of this Recharge T8 Plug-in hybrid model lists from around £66,000. That means you can expect to pay a premium of around £9,000 over the comparable B5 diesel version. The range starts with 'Inscription Expression' trim, after which there are two main spec levels, 'R-Design' and 'Inscription', with iterim 'Pro' variants of each also available. Standard equipment levels are comprehensive. All models get smart alloy wheels of at least 19-inches in size, plus LED headlights that at night can bend with the road and dip themselves automatically. You also get roof rails, rear parking sensors, auto headlamps and wipers and a power-operated tailgate. Inside, there's full leather trim and a powered driver's seat, 2-Zone Electronic Climate Control and a clever 'Sensus Connect' infotainment system you activate via a large 9-inch centre console touchscreen. From here (or via voice control), you can access a 10-speaker 330-watt High Performance Sound system with DAB digital radio. Plus there's a 'Sensus Navigation' system with Traffic Information and European mapping, plus, as you'd expect, Bluetooth 'phone compatibility and USB and aux-in ports. XC90 safety gear includes a run off-road protection package which tightens seatbelts and activates energy-absorbing technology in the seats when the car detects challenging terrain ahead. Another system is the auto-braking feature, which cuts in if a driver pulls out in front of oncoming traffic. Both safety systems aim to bring Volvo closer to its vision of nobody being seriously injured or killed in any of its vehicles by this century's third decade.
As part of the changes made to this updated MK2 XC90 line-up, Volvo introduced a higher-capacity battery to this T8 variant, which enhanced its all-electric driving range by around 15%, so it's up from 22 to 30.4 miles - a useful increase. Theoretically then, you could use an XC90 T8 every day without ever visiting a fuel station unless you needed to undertake a longer trip. That's assuming of course that you keep the lithium-ion battery fully charged. That'll take a little longer than before thanks to the bigger battery. Owners can buy a wallbox from Volvo that will charge their cars on 16-amp power in about three hours. If you're out and about and find a 10-amp pubic charging point, the needed time will be slightly lengthier - around four hours - while connecting up to a normal domestic three-pin 6-am supply will take eight hours. Ultimately, to justify this T8 model's price premium over the conventionally-engined variants in the range, you really have to try and plug it in at every opportunity, otherwise you'll simply find yourself running a heavy petrol-powered SUV. And one that will need more frequent refuelling than more conventional XC90 derivatives because its fuel tank size falls from 71 to 50-litres due to the need to make space for the hybrid powertrain and the battery. If on the move, you want to prioritise all-electric progress, you can select a 'Pure' driving mode that prioritises electric-only operation and would be useful in an urban environment. In everyday use though, most T8 owners will be driving in the 'Hybrid' mode that the car's powertrain automatically defaults to, a setting in which the vehicle will automatically alternate between petrol and electric power - and the basis for a faintly incredible-sounding set of WLTP-rated running cost figures: up to 104.5mpg on the WLTP combined cycle and up to 61g/km of CO2. A 'Driver Performance' option on the centre-dash screen graphically shows how frugally you've been driving your XC90 and on this T8 model, also includes an interactive graphic showing what's currently being powered by what. While we can't imagine any XC90 T8 owner ever actually achieving the brand's officially-quoted returns, the important thing is that the government believes them, so business users will be able to write down as much as 100% of the cost of this car against their tax liability. And a 40% tax payer could be driving an XC90 T8 while incurring a 16% BIK tax bill that would be way less than half of what they would pay for a conventional diesel-powered large luxury SUV in this class. If you're a business buyer browsing in this segment, these are figures that'll reward a bit of thought if you're just about to blindly sign on the dotted line for a conventional diesel model.
Volvo seems to be flourishing under foreign ownership and this Recharge T8 Plug-in hybrid XC90 model is a good example of why. You might have expected Chinese company control to stifle the company's Scandinavian character. Instead, what we've been given here is a return to Swedish charisma and an emphasis on all the things that the Gothenburg brand does best - cool restrained style, real-world practicality and class-leading safety. Of course, this Volvo's not perfect. There are still sharper-handling choices and more capable off roaders in this sector. In balancing these virtues though, this XC90 sets its own class standard and in doing so, establishes a family benchmark amongst luxury SUVs that rivals will struggle to match. Add in the astonishingly low running costs that come with Plug-in hybrid technology and it's a difficult formula to resist if you're shopping in this segment. Company founders Assar Gabrielsson and Gustaf Larson would have liked this car. More importantly though, if you're shopping in this segment, we think you will too.
The improved version of Volvo's second generation XC90 gets a mild dose of electrification. Jonathan Crouch takes a look.
Volvo's second generation XC90 is a seven-seat luxury SUV that's already given key rivals like Audi's Q7 and the Land Rover Discovery a lot to think about. Safe, efficient, clever, practical and stylish, this car continues to position the Swedish maker as a credibly prestigious automotive brand. Now, it's better still, thanks to the introduction of mild hybrid engine tech.
Here's the car that began Volvo's modern era, the second generation XC90. This large luxury SUV established new standards for the brand when this model was originally announced back in 2014 and the company's recent move towards full electrification will re-set those standards once again. The improved XC90 model we're going to look at here, a range announced in the Spring of 2019, has reflected that trend with fresh mild hybrid technology. Plus the line-up's got a light update. Time to take a fresh look at this car. The key change to the range is the inclusion of mild hybrid 'B5' diesel and petrol engines that together replace the conventional D5 diesel that the majority of buyers of this SUV previously chose. Otherwise, things are much as they were. All XC90s continue to provide the sort of proper full-sized seven-seat versatility that few rivals can credibly offer and a cool, authentic brand of Scandinavian charm that's really quite appealing. It all sounds promising doesn't it? Time to put this car to the test.
When it comes to the XC90 range's mild hybrid 'B5' petrol and diesel engines, most buyers will prefer the 235hp diesel unit over the 250hp petrol version, but either way, the drivetrain set-up is the same, based around a 48-volt battery, a 'KERS' kinetic energy recovery system and an 'ISG' integrated starter-generator. Every time you brake or take your foot from the throttle, the 'KERS' set-up captures surplus energy and stores it as electricity in an extra battery provided in the boot. That additional electricity can be used to boost acceleration, help the stop/start system or power ancillary functions. The objective here wasn't to provide Prius-like periods of electric-only driving but instead make the engine more efficient via smoother transitions between driving, cruising and resting. That's all been aided by revisions to the automatic gearbox and the implementation of the brand's first brake-by-wire system. As before, across the range, there's the option of an 'Active Four-C Chassis' package, which gives you four-corner adaptive dampers and electronic air suspension. Handling strikes a good balance between comfort and agility; cruising refinement meets the required executive standard; and there's the potential for a mild amount of off road prowess. A standard 'Pilot Assist' system offers a degree of highway-orientated autonomous driving technology. And you might be interested to know this car can tow up to 2,700kgs.
Only very minor visual changes feature with this revised version of the MK2 model - tiny tweaks to the bumper and the air intakes, plus extra black trim on the 'R-Design' model. There's also a slightly redesigned front grille, which as before features Volvo's traditional Iron Mark logo at its centre and will be finished in either black or silver, depending on trim level. We liked the front-of-cabin experience served up by this XC90 when we first tested it back in 2015: we still do. This interior is simple, elegant - and very uncluttered, with only eight buttons on the fascia. The remaining functions you'd normally access through confusing rows of little switches on the dash have been relocated into menu options that lie behind the big, easy-to-use icons you'll find on a smart 9-inch infotainment colour touchscreen that's presented portrait-style on the centre console. You'll glimpse more hi-tech screen technology through the three-spoke wheel courtesy of Volvo's 12.3-inch Active TFT Crystal Driver's Information Display. Otherwise though, this cabin's an aesthetic triumph, immaculately made and full of premium touches like the diamond-cut start/stop control switch and the slatted cover for this centre dash. This genuine seven seater features innovatively designed seats that also free up interior space for passengers in both the second and third seat rows. Even the third row can seat an adult up to 170cm tall. As for the boot space on offer, well that's inevitably going to be a little restricted with all seven seats in place, though even in this configuration, you still get 397-litres of luggage space. Fold the 3rd row and you can load up to 1,102-litres, if you pack to the roof.
Sales of this car in our market are split 50:50 between fleet and retail and from the launch of this revised MK2 model XC90 in the Spring of 2019, prices were pitched from around £53,000 with the usual variance upwards depending on your choice of trim and engine. We'll start with trim; there are three basic packages - 'Momentum', 'R-Design' and top 'Inscription'. In each case, you've the option of paying more for a plusher 'Pro' version of the spec level you've chosen - the premium is anything between £2,800 and £4,900, depending on the model in question. We for instance, tried an 'R-Design Pro' variant. Whatever XC90 derivative you select, all models have seven seats and come with AWD, with that drive provided through an eight-speed Geartronic automatic gearbox from a four cylinder 2.0-litre engine offered in four very different forms. The mild hybrid models that most XC90 customers choose are the most affordable in the range. Around 75% of buyers go for the 235hp twin turbo B5 variant, but there's also a mild hybrid 250hp petrol version available (confusingly, also badged 'B5') which costs £550 less than its diesel counterpart. Safety provision is industry leading. No one's ever been killed in the UK in an XC90 and it's unlikely that will change.
The vast majority of XC90 buyers will opt for the B5 mild hybrid version of this car - probably the diesel variant. As you'll know if you've read our 'Driving Experience' section, both petrol and diesel B5 models use powertrains electrified via brake-by-wire energy recovery and enhanced by Volvo's advanced kinetic energy-recovery braking system. This set-up claims to offer drivers up to 15 per cent fuel savings and emission reductions in real-world driving. Sounds promising; let's get to the figures, all of which assume activation of the Drive Mode system's most frugal 'Eco' setting. Here, an 'Eco-Coast' function will automatically be activated for highway use, disconnecting the engine so that you're merely travelling on your car's kinetic energy: a prod on the throttle is all that's necessary to restore normal powered motion. Anyway, to the stats: an XC90 B5 diesel manages a WLTP-rated combined cycle fuel figure of up to 44.1mpg and an NEDC-rated CO2 return of up to 154g/km. Even the B5 petrol variant puts out no more than 174g/km of CO2. To give you some class perspective on the B5 diesel's fuel and CO2 showing, we'll tell you that the equivalent figures for a rival Audi Q7 45 TDI are 33.2mpg and 184g/km; for a Land Rover Discovery Sd4 diesel, it's 33.6mpg and 197g/km; and for a BMW X5 xDrive 30d, the figures are 37.2mpg and 159g/km. Either way, you're looking at quite a difference. It seems like Volvo's mild hybrid tech really does deliver on its claims.
This will be the last ever large Volvo to use diesel power, but at least it does so more efficiently in this revised version of this MK2 model. The volume B5 version will easily out-sell all the other variants combined and we can see why. There are no driving downsides for its mild hybrid tech and the electrification makes a decent difference to cleanliness and frugality. Plus if you really don't like fuelling from the black pump, there's always a petrol B5 option. Of course, this Volvo's not perfect. There are still sharper-handling choices and more capable off roaders in this sector. In balancing its own blend of virtues though, this XC90 sets its own class standard and in doing so, establishes a family benchmark amongst luxury SUVs that rivals struggle to match. Company founders Assar Gabrielsson and Gustaf Larson would have liked this car. More importantly though, if you're shopping in this segment, we think you will too.
This improved second generation Volvo XC90 aims to make the most of its sleek Swedish design values. Jonathan Crouch takes a look.
Volvo's second generation XC90 was worth the wait, a seven-seat luxury SUV that has given key rivals like Audi's Q7 and the Land Rover Discovery a lot to think about. Safe, efficient, clever, practical and stylish, it has re-established this Swedish maker as a credibly prestigious automotive brand. This revised version offers a slightly smarter look and some extra electrified tech. It's well worth a look.
The Volvo XC90 is just about the perfect example of a vehicle that created a niche for itself that no rival could seem to penetrate. If you wanted a 7-seat luxury 4x4 that was never really a sports utility vehicle, that was supremely comfortable and, above all, was neither shouty like a German nor trying too hard to fit in with the country set like a Land Rover, it was plum perfect. Nothing even got close. Because of this, the first generation XC90 hung around for ages. After all, why mess with a winning formula? Later versions, sold right up to 2014, tidied up the basic formula but were otherwise much the same as the models that first rolled into dealers in 2002. That's one heck of an innings. At least though, it paved the way for something different. There was no way that the second generation XC90 would be a mere 'evolutionary' design. Even so, few were ready for quite the radical change Volvo's Chinese owners Zhejiang Geely have funded. The low-key approach of old? It's fair to say that has been usurped by a much more extrovert look.
The key news with this revised MK2 XC90 model lies in the introduction of an advanced kinetic energy-recovery braking system, which is coupled with the company's existing 2.0-litre internal combustion engines to create a integrated electrified mild hybrid powertrain, identifiable by the brand's latest 'B' badging. Otherwise, things are much as before. The car sits on Volvo's light, stiff 'Scalable Product Architecture' (SPA) platform. Most customers choose the 235hp B5 mild hybrid diesel but there are also two mild hybrid petrol models too, the 250hp B5 and the 300hp B6. The other option is the Recharge T8 petrol/electric plug-in hybrid model, billed as 'the world's most powerful and cleanest large SUV'. This delivers a combined 386hp output, with a thumping 640Nm of torque. 62mph from rest is dispatched in just 5.8s, yet this car can also give you 26 miles of pure electric driving range when fully charged. All the engines drive all four wheels via an eight-speed automatic transmission. Across the range, there's the option of an 'Active Four-C Chassis' package, which gives you four-corner adaptive dampers and electronic air suspension. Handling strikes a good balance between comfort and agility; cruising refinement meets the required executive standard; and there's the potential for a mild amount of off road prowess. A standard 'Pilot Assist' system offers a degree of highway-orientated autonomous driving technology. And you might be interested to know that conventional variants can tow up to 2,700kgs.
On the outside, this refreshed XC90 offers subtle upgrades to the original award-winning exterior design, such as new wheels, exterior colours and a revised front grille, among other details. Otherwise, things are much as before, with a sculpted bonnet flowing into LED front headlights with a distinctive so-called 'Hammer of Thor' design. The interior still seems boldly-styled, with a massive tablet-like touch screen control console helping to create a cabin that's modern, spacious and uncluttered. Volvo's clearly put a lot of budget into driving up materials quality and this XC90 gets soft leather and wood with handcrafted details, including an optional gear lever made of crystal glass from Orrefors, the Swedish glassmaker, and diamond-cut controls for the start/stop button and volume control. This genuine seven seater features innovatively designed seats that also free up interior space for passengers in both the second and third seat rows. Even the third row can seat an adult up to 170cm tall. As for the boot space on offer, well that's inevitably going to be a little restricted with all seven seats in place, though even in this configuration, you still get 397-litres of luggage space. Fold the 3rd row and you can load up to 1,102-litres, if you pack to the roof.
All XC90 variants come with 7 seats, automatic transmission and AWD and there's a choice of three core trim levels - 'Momentum', 'R-Design' and 'Inscription' - with additional 'Pro' versions of the latter twoh. Most UK buyers will want the volume 225hp B5 diesel version; the unique Recharge T8 petrol/electric plug-in hybrid variant is priced from around £68,000. Pricing for the mild hybrid XC90 models starts from around £55,000. Top models can be ordered with features like 21-inch Inscription alloy wheels and powered, heated and ventilated seats trimmed in Nappa leather. Inside, the tablet-like touch screen in the centre console drives the minor controls and a whole host of Internet-based products and services. Audio services in the plushest variants come courtesy of a monster Bowers & Wilkins stereo that's juiced up by a 1,400 watt amplifier, 19 speakers, and the latest sound processing software. It even has air-ventilated subwoofers. The electronically controlled air suspension has choice of five modes, including one where the driver is free to tailor the settings to his or her personal taste. XC90 safety gear includes a run off-road protection package which tightens seatbelts and activates energy-absorbing technology in the seats when the car detects challenging terrain ahead. Another system is the auto-braking feature, which cuts in if a driver pulls out in front of oncoming traffic. Both safety systems aim to bring Volvo closer to its vision of nobody being seriously injured or killed in any of its vehicles by 2020.
Volvo claims that the advanced kinetic energy-recovery braking system introduced with this revised XC90 offers drivers up to 15 per cent fuel savings and emission reductions in real-world driving. This new brake-by-wire system interacts with the energy-recovery system and reduces fuel consumption and emissions by recovering kinetic energy under braking. The introduction of these XC90 'B'-badged cars represents a major step for Volvo towards its electrification ambitions. On to the figures, all of which we'll quote to WLTP standards. In the B5 diesel most will choose, expect up to 42.7mpg on the combined cycle and up to 171g/km of CO2. Inevitably, these figures take a tumble with petrol power; the B5 manages up to 32.4mpg and up to 199g/km, while the B6 manages up to 30.7mpg and up to 210g/km. If you want to do better, you'll need to look at the top T8 Recharge petrol plug-in hybrid model, which delivers up to 63g/km of CO2, 100.8mpg and up to 28.6 miles of pure electric driving range. Maintenance should be relatively affordable for a car of this kind, with intervals every year or 18,000 miles. Three or five year pre-paid servicing packages are available to help you budget ahead. The warranty is the usual three year, 60,000 mile package.
Volvo seems to be flourishing under foreign ownership. You might have expected Chinese control to stifle the company's Scandinavian character. Instead, what we've been given here is a return to Swedish charisma and an emphasis on all the things that the Gothenburg brand does best - cool restrained style, real-world practicality and class-leading safety. Of course, this Volvo's not perfect. There are still sharper-handling choices and more capable off roaders in this sector. In balancing these virtues though, this XC90 sets its own class standard and in doing so, establishes a family benchmark amongst luxury SUVs that rivals will struggle to match. Company founders Assar Gabrielsson and Gustaf Larson would have liked this car. More importantly though, if you're shopping in this segment, we think you will too.
Mr G Hoeg - 20/06/20, owner of a Volvo XC90 Momentum D5 Awd Auto
User rating: 4.5/5
Mrs S Passi - 17/01/20, owner of a Volvo XC90 Diesel Estate 2.0 B5  Momentum 5dr AWD Geartronic
User rating: 5/5
Mr N Lovett - 04/10/19, owner of a Volvo XC90 Diesel Estate 2.0 D5 PowerPulse Momentum Pro 5dr AWD Geartronic
User rating: 5/5
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