2016 Volvo XC90 (1115)


2016 Volvo XC90 – one giant leap to the front of the luxury mid-size SUV pack

Excerpt from a review by colleague Vince Bodiford www.theweekenddrive.com

It’s amazing what $11-billion in cash will enable a company like Volvo to produce. That infusion came from Volvo’s owner, Zhejiang Geely Holdings of China – but make no mistake, the all-new Volvo XC90 is a pure and high dose of Swedish design and thinking. Volvo is pretty good at keeping true to itself regardless of ownership status – some of the best models from Volvo came during the Ford ownership era – including the original XC90 itself, and the retracting hardtop C70.

Built in Torslanda, Sweden, this new XC90 is one giant leap to very front of the luxury mid-size SUV pack. It’s #1 on the US News & World Report ranking of SUV’s in the segment, followed by Lexus RX.

The 2016 XC90 is a totally new vehicle from the ground up. It is available in three trims: Momentum, Inscription and R-Design. Each offers a unique personality with visually distinctive exterior and interior styling treatments plus different levels of individual features.

  • Momentum will likely be the most popular XC90 to meet the needs of most luxury SUV customers.
  • Inscription (tested) adds exclusive luxury features that focus on craftsmanship, comfort and elegance.
  • R-Design is for those who seek a more sporty, dynamic and expressive SUV with increased visual appeal and an enhanced attitude.

General Information: It is assembled in Torslanda, Sweden; Classification is Midsize Luxury Cars. Cars from Volvo: XC90, XC70, XC60, S60, S80, V60

Handling & Performance:

All XC90s feature a state-of-the-art 2.0-liter four-cylinder supercharged and turbocharged engine that puts out a strong 316 horsepower and stout 295 lb.-ft. of torque between 2,200 rpm and 4,500 rpm. This compact powerplant design contributes to impressive fuel economy, reduced emissions and agile handling.

A supercharger adds torque in low and medium speeds until the turbocharger takes over. The supercharger is then disengaged to help reduce friction and improve efficiency.


The XC90’s all-new interior is truly a Scandinavian sanctuary, and is the most luxurious ever created for a Volvo. Developed according to the “Designed Around You” strategy, emphasis is placed on the driver and passenger’s needs. Since the new XC90 will be popular with families, attention was focused on passenger comfort, including those riding in the second and third rows, clever use of space, versatility and ease of use.

With the rare opportunity to create a completely new vehicle on a new platform, Volvo’s designers gave the XC90 great proportions. One area seen as the real measurement of luxury vehicles is called the “dash-to-front axle.” The longer space between the A-pillar and front wheel arch helps to create the impression of a more luxurious vehicle.

Another important aspect of the design was to ensure a recognizable and memorable “face” for the XC90. The powerful front appearance sets the tone by distinguishing itself from competitors while proudly announcing that this is a Volvo. Designers focused on key elements including lighting and grille.

LED daytime running lights are evocative of “Thor’s Hammer” presenting a unique and memorable design element. The grille and Ironmark including the signature diagonal slash, have been proportioned for a larger grille. Lower fascia character lines add drama to the visual appeal and help form a confident personality.


XC90 T6 AWD Momentum: $48,900

XC90 T6 AWD Inscription (tested): $54,500

XC90 T6 AWD R-Design: $52,900

Conclusion: I’ve been impressed with the Volvo XC90 since the first model, and this all-new XC90 is head and shoulders above and better in every way. It probably contains as much computing and sensors as the Space Shuttle, but in a package that’s down-to-earth for everyone to use and enjoy. It’s comfortable and attractive, and is easily among the top contenders in the midsize luxury SUV segment.

Recognized Competition:

Lexus RX/GX, Porsche Cayenne, BMW X5, Audi Q7, Mercedes-Benz ML/GL, Acura MDX, Infinity QX60/70, GMC Acadia Denali, Land Rover Range Rover Sport.

Good News:

Shockingly gorgeous and comfortable cabin. Volvo is already famous for their comfortable seats, but now you can add the whole interior to their list of conquests. A large amount of features and content for the price.

Bad News:

The lane-keeping and front collision avoidance features were confusing and caused a lack of confidence if they were working, on or off. Settings and controlling these features was complicated and confusing at first, but became easier.

Gas Stats:

$2.99 Gal avg. November 20, 2015


for more information.

20 City and 25 Highway MPG


MSRP $49 -53,000.

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