Volvo has just sauntered into the battle to convince the world that wagons are as cool as they are functional with a new launch video for the company's very sexy V60 long-roof. The car's hobbies appear to be rocking out across the open desert and hustling family and cargo across town in a hurry. Globally, the company is offering a number of engines in the V60, including a new 2.0-liter direct-injected four with around 203 horsepower and 221 lb-ft of torque. Sadly, we wouldn't exactly hold your breath waiting for that one to show up on this side of the world.
But all may not yet be lost – Volvo has been kind enough to supply the car with a turbo 3.0-liter T6 with 304 Swedish ponies and 324 lb-ft of torque – a powertrain that sounds more like what the automaker might consider for North America (if indeed it gets the nod at all). In either case, the blown six-pot would would no doubt have us double-checking to make sure our groceries are secured. With that kind of grunt, Volvo says the wagon will scoot up to 60 mph in a scant 6.6 seconds. All-wheel drive is standard, and the only gearbox available on the T6 is the company's six-speed automatic. Volvo will offer no less than eight different engines in the V60, so it's hard telling exactly which will show up here in the States should the time come.
Until then, the company has given us one sweet launch video and a bevy of images to drool over. Be sure to hit the jump for the press release and to check out the short flick after you roll through the high-res gallery.
- as sporty as the all-new S60
The Volvo V60 makes its entry onto the car market with its sights firmly set on giving the all-new S60 sedan model a tough match over the title of "The Most Dynamic Volvo Model Ever".
"Many of the customers who had an advance look at the new V60 during the development process feel that its attitude is at least as sporty as that of the all-new S60," says Volvo Cars Design Director Peter Horbury.
No less than 90 percent of the annual V60 production of 50,000 cars will find European buyers.
"The typical sports wagon customer is an S60 buyer who would like some extra space and flexibility, but without the slightest compromise on sporty design and exciting driving properties," says Volvo Cars President and CEO Stephen Odell, and adds:
"The competition is razor-sharp and the customers in this segment know exactly what they want. That is why we have further boosted the interior's sense of exclusive quality and packed the car with safety- and comfort-related technical innovations. The result is a truly unique sports wagon, in total harmony with its sporty attitude."
Coupe rather than estate car
The pronounced wedge shape and the slim coupe-like roof line of the new V60 are accompanied by the shoulder profile along the car's sides, creating a gentle yet powerful double wave from the headlamps at the front to the tail lamps at the rear.
"From the design viewpoint the focus was on making the car as close to a coupe as possible, while retaining that handy extra space at the rear. Our sports wagon does not aim to compete with the traditional estate car. For the customer who wants a lot of load space, there is our V70 or XC70," says Örjan Sterner, head of exterior design for the new Volvo V60.
"The dip in the middle of the double wave visually pushes the car down. This enhances the stance and makes the car look sleeker and lower. The sculpted bonnet and the short overhangs front and rear also emphasise the sports car feel."
Uncompromising chassis approach
Volvo Cars' chassis experts have chiselled out the driving experience in the new Volvo V60 with the same passion and uncompromising approach that characterised the development of the all-new S60 sedan.
The result is an authentic sports wagon with driving properties that do the sporty lines full justice.
"We've pushed the envelope to limits we've never previously approached. You simply have to drive this car to appreciate how we've driven chassis development to its pinnacle. Take the car out on a narrow, winding country road where every bend brings a new challenge and the new V60 will demonstrate its agility with sparkling enthusiasm," says Stefan Sällqvist, who headed the development of the chassis in the new V60.
Volvo's new sports wagon is available with a choice of two chassis. On the European market the newly developed dynamic chassis is standard, while some other markets will have the touring chassis as standard with the dynamic variant available as an option.
The difference between the two chassis alternatives is to be found in the dampers and the front and rear subframes. Here the touring variant has a somewhat softer setting to give a smooth ride on poorer road surfaces.
Every single detail refined
"The spotlight was on giving the concept of comfort a whole new dimension. The dynamic chassis has an alert, quick-responding character that puts the focus on the driving experience, yet without diluting ride comfort," explains Stefan Sällqvist.
In addition to the two standard chassis, all variants of the V60 can be specified with the optional FOUR-C (Continuously Controlled Chassis Concept) active chassis, which has been modified and refined for better control and comfort compared with previous Volvos.
The software in the AWD (All Wheel Drive) system has been modified to allow the four-wheel drive variants (AWD is standard in the T6 and optional with D5 with automatic gearbox) of the new V60 to exploit the sporty new chassis to the limit.
During the development process, the chassis team worked on the new Volvo V60 in parallel with the all-new Volvo S60. The result is a solution that features changes and refinements to virtually every single detail that influences a car's driving properties. This includes improved steering, stiffer springs and bushes as well as more damping than in any previous Volvo.
The first sports wagon with Advanced Stability Control
The dynamic new chassis is backed up by a range of electronic systems that sharpen the sporty driving experience still further.
Like the all-new S60, the new V60 is fitted with Advanced Stability Control. With a new roll angle sensor, it is possible to identify any skidding tendency at a very early stage. This means that the anti-skid system can step in earlier and with greater precision. Advanced Stability Control is a great asset in dynamic driving involving considerable lateral forces, which improves handling and rapid avoiding manoeuvres.
New Corner Traction Control for smoother cornering
Corner Traction Control is a new feature that uses torque vectoring so the car corners even more smoothly. This technology is a further refinement of the Dynamic Stability and Traction Control (DSTC) system.
When cornering, the car's inner driven wheel is braked, causing more power to be transmitted to the outer driven wheel. This allows the driver to corner more tightly while reducing any tendency to understeer.
A highly advanced braking system is an important part of the dynamic driving properties of the new V60. Volvo's new sports wagon is equipped with a number of features that interact to provide the shortest possible stopping distance in all scenarios.
Exclusive quality - with extra functionality
The interior of the V60 sports wagon is a clear example of how Volvo Cars' designers have added excitement, contrast and a playful element to the Scandinavian design tradition's rational simplicity and functionality.
"The interior has a decidedly extrovert attitude, but without losing any of its practical Scandinavian roots. The new V60 brings us up to a whole new level when it comes to the integral experience of colour, form, material and technology," says Volvo Cars' Design Director Peter Horbury.
The interior is thus lavish in terms of its driver-oriented details, but it is still a five-seater car offering comfortable space for all its occupants. Scandinavian design's rationality, simplicity, clarity and functionality are all prominent in the new V60:
* The 40/20/40-split rear seat and the fold-flat front passenger seat make it possible to combine passengers and load in a remarkably flexible way. Each backrest in the three-piece rear seat is folded with exceptional ease to create an entirely flat load floor. The rear seat headrests can be folded electrically.
* The load area has been designed for maximum utilisation of each available millimetre. The 1095 millimetre wide tailgate in combination with extra space behind the wheel housings and under the load floor is an example of the systematic approach adopted to ensure generous load capacity. The load area has a capacity of 430 litres.
* The rear seat can be specified with integrated child booster cushions in the two outer seats.
The most high-tech Volvo ever - with Pedestrian Detection
The sporty interior of the new V60 is also the most advanced high-tech environment ever available to a Volvo driver.
"The interior of the new V60 is all about innovative design in two areas: form and technology. The design is characterised by sporty freshness down to the smallest detail. The technological aspect includes all those smart solutions that contribute to a driving experience unlike that of any other Volvo - from collision avoidance safety and comfort systems to infotainment and audio excellence of absolute world class," says Tomas Ahlborg, Project Director for the new V60.
Pedestrian Detection with full auto brake can detect if a pedestrian steps out into the road in front of the car. If the driver does not respond in time, the car can automatically activate the brakes.
"Volvo has always led the way when it comes to protecting the occupants in our cars. In recent years we have adopted groundbreaking initiatives that help the driver avoid collisions with other vehicles. Now we are taking a giant stride forward with technology that can contribute to increased safety for unprotected road users as well," says Thomas Broberg, Senior Safety Advisor at Volvo Cars.
Can avoid collisions at speeds below 35 km/h
In an emergency situation the driver first receives an audible warning combined with a flashing light in the windscreen's head-up display. In order to prompt an immediate, intuitive reaction this warning resembles a brake light. At the same time, the car's brakes are pre-charged. If the driver does not react to the warning and an accident is imminent, full braking power is automatically applied.
Pedestrian Detection with full auto brake can avoid a collision with a pedestrian at speeds up to 35 km/h if the driver does not react in time. At higher speeds, the focus is on reducing the car's speed as much as possible prior to impact. Speed can be reduced by up to 25 km/h.
Statistics reveal that the car's speed has considerable importance for the outcome of the accident. A lower speed of impact means that the risk of serious injury is significantly reduced.
City Safety standard
The new Volvo V60 also features City Safety as standard.
With City Safety, the car automatically brakes if the driver fails to react in time when the vehicle in front slows down or stops - or if he or she is driving too fast towards a stationary object. The system can lessen or even entirely avoid low-speed rear-end impacts at speeds up to 30 km/h.
More powerful T6 version
During its first year of production, the new Volvo V60 will be available with a variety of diesel and petrol engines spanning the range from an economical 115 horsepower DRIVe version to an eager high-performance turbocharged version producing 304 horsepower. The focused drive to cut CO2 emissions has lowered fuel consumption throughout the engine range.
The T6 petrol engine has a displacement of 3.0 litres and has been improved still further, primarily thanks to lower internal friction. It now pumps out 304 bhp and no less than 440 Nm of torque. Acceleration from 0-100 km/h takes 6.6 seconds and top speed is limited to 250 km/h.
At the same time, Volvo Cars' engine specialists have succeeded in cutting fuel consumption by about 10 percent to 10.2 l/100 km (EU Combined).
The engine's power is delivered to the wheels via Volvo's second-generation six-speed automatic Geartronic transmission. New valves and lower friction mean faster gearchanges than before. AWD (All Wheel Drive) is standard on the T6.
New direct-injected two-litre engine
The new four-cylinder 2.0T GTDi (Gasoline Turbocharged Direct Injection) engine has a displacement of two litres and produces a generous 203 bhp, with 300 Nm of torque available from 1750 rpm. Acceleration from 0-100 km/h takes 7.9 seconds with a manual gearbox and 8.4 seconds with automatic transmission. Top speed is limited to 230 km/h with the manual gearbox and 230 km/h with the automatic.
New in-house-developed turbocharged technology, direct injection and twin variable camshafts produce a unique combination of low fuel consumption, low emissions and a high and broad performance range, all packaged in a very compact format.
Later during the first year of production, the new V60 will also become available in a 2.0 GTDi variant producing 240 bhp and 320 Nm of torque.
Two new 1.6-litre GTDi engines
In addition there is a new 1.6-litre GTDi engine which is available in two versions: 1.6 GTDi (T3) with 150 horsepower and T4 with 180 horsepower.
The 180 bhp engine offers maximum torque of 240 Nm from just 1500 rpm all the way up to 5000 rpm. During short-term overboost, it provides an impressive 270 Nm of torque. This gives excellent lugging ability throughout the speed range. The torque curve is relatively gentle, resulting in a particularly comfortable driving experience.
The 150 horsepower engine offers 240 Nm of torque.
The 2.0T, T5 and T4 are available in combination with Volvo's automatic six-speed Powershift transmission or a six-speed manual gearbox, while the T3 comes with a manual gearbox.
Two five-cylinder turbodiesels
The engine range also includes two five-cylinder turbodiesels.
The D5 high-performance engine with twin turbos produces 205 horsepower and 420 Nm of torque. Acceleration from 0-100 km/h takes 7.9 seconds (manual and automatic). Top speed is 230 km/h (limited) with the manual gearbox and 230 km/h with the automatic.
In the most recent D5 version, which was introduced in spring 2009, performance and driveability requirements have been met by fitting two turbochargers of different sizes, one taking over from the other and providing added power across a broader rev range.
The complementary properties of the two turbos are utilised optimally for a combination of high performance and low fuel consumption of 5.4 l/100 km (EU Combined) putting this engine in the running for best in class.
In addition there is the newly developed two-litre D3 producing 163 bhp and 400 Nm of torque. Acceleration from 0-100 km/h takes 9.4 seconds (manual and automatic). Top speed is 220 km/h (manual) and 215 km/h (automatic).
The new five-cylinder 2.0D is in principle the same engine as the present 2.4D, but cylinder capacity has been reduced with a shorter stroke to optimise fuel consumption.
Both turbodiesels are available with a six-speed automatic transmission or six-speed manual gearbox.
The D5 with automatic can also be specified with all-wheel drive.
During the course of the first year of production, a DRIVe version of the new V60 will also be introduced, featuring a 1.6-litre diesel engine. The engine produces 115 bhp and 270 Nm of torque, and will only be available with a six-speed manual gearbox.
Entirely new Infotainment system
The new V60 also gets an all-new Infotainment system where information is presented on a five-inch or seven-inch colour screen in the instrument panel. The screen has a high position to make it easy for the driver to keep his or her eyes on the road.
The audio experience in the new V60 has been further enhanced compared with previous models.
"Our most advanced system, Premium Sound, has a class-D digital 5x130W amplifier with circuits from Sweden's Anaview, Dolby Digital in combination with Dolby Pro Logic II Surround, the award-winning MultEQ from Audyssey Laboratories and 12 loudspeakers. All this creates an audio experience of absolute world class," says Tomas Ahlborg.
The Volvo V60 is one of the first car models in the world to use the Audyssey Laboratories MultEQ technology. MultEQ eliminates the distortion caused by the car cabin's acoustics, providing crisp, clear sound with improved soundstage for everyone in the car.
In addition to the top-of-the line Premium Sound, which comes with a 7-inch screen, there are another three audio systems.
European target group
The initial annual target for the new Volvo V60 is 50,000 cars. Of these, no less than 90 percent will go to European buyers. The five largest markets are Sweden, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Italy and Germany.
The new V60 is built at the Volvo Cars production plant in Torslanda, Sweden. The first cars will be delivered to customers in autumn 2010.
"The figure '60' in our model range nowadays indicates our sportiest models. The XC60 was the first step. We took the next step with the all-new S60 sedan - and now we're launching the V60 sports wagon," says Stephen Odell.