2001 S60 New Car Test Drive
Volvo's S60 is an all-new mid-size model that brings the Swedish firm's safety legacy and standards to consumers for whom the S40 is too small and the S80 too big. Not surprisingly, it also fits between those models in price -- starting at $26,500 but running to about $35,000 for a full prom dress edition.
The 2001 S60 replaces the S70, which replaced the 850, which replaced the 740, which, if memory serves, replaced a wooden cart with stone wheels.
The S60 handles really well when you get it going, but getting it going depends greatly on which engine you choose. If you like lots of launch and passing power, avoid the base engine.
Three models are available: 2.4 ($26,500); 2.4T ($29,800); T5 ($31,800). The big difference between models is the difference in horsepower.
The 2.4 comes with a 2.4-liter five-cylinder engine (yes, five cylinders) that produces 168 horsepower and 170 pounds-feet of torque.
The 2.4T uses a low-pressure turbocharger to generate 197 horsepower and 210 pounds-feet of torque; and that torque comes on at a much lower engine speed (1800 rpm instead of 4500 rpm), giving this model much better acceleration away from those intersections.
The mighty T5 uses a high-pressure turbo to produce 247 horsepower and 243 pounds-feet of torque for quick, turbocharged throttle response.
All S60 models get a raft of safety and security items: front, side and head airbags up front; seats that move to reduce whiplash problems; an immobilizer and an alarm; a Safe Approach and Home Safe Lighting System; five head restraints; and anti-lock disc brakes. The T5 model comes standard with traction control; and a Dynamic Stability system is an option.
Convenience features common to every S60 include power windows, trunk release and door locks, illuminated visor mirrors, a trunk light, a tilt/telescopic steering wheel, 60/40 split-folding rear seat, a pollen filter, air conditioning, cupholders, and remote keyless entry.