2005 XC90 New Car Test Drive
The Volvo XC90 seats seven, with a roomy, versatile interior that boasts more cargo space than other vehicles in this class. The XC90 offers a comfortable ride and handles well on streets and highways. It offers most of the bells and whistles, and in base trim it's competitively priced.
For 2005, the Volvo XC90 is available with a V8 engine, in addition to the five-cylinder and six-cylinder models.
The XC90 is safe and fuel efficient. Its advanced safety features include a gyroscopic sensor that can detect an impending rollover and correct the imbalance; a roof structure built of high-strength steel; a low front cross member designed to inflict less damage to occupants of compact vehicles. The various models get better gas mileage than most comparable seven-passenger SUVs.
For 2005, the Volvo XC90 is available in three variations: the base XC90 2.5T, the XC90 T6 AWD and the new XC90 V8.
The XC90 2.5T ($34,840) uses Volvo's proven inline five-cylinder turbocharged engine, here displacing 2.5 liters and delivering 208 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque, mated to a five-speed automatic transmission with front-wheel drive.
The T6 AWD ($41,015) is powered by the S80 luxury sedan's inline six-cylinder with twin turbos, pumped up to 2.9 liters for 268 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque, and mated to a beefier but less efficient four-speed automatic and all-wheel drive.
The V8 ($45,395) draws its energy from a 4.4-liter V8 developed to Volvo specifications by Yamaha, the Japanese motorcycle builder and auto engine specialist that several years ago built the powerplant for the Ford Taurus S.H.O. sports sedan. The new V8 generates 315 horsepower and 325 pound-feet of torque and is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission and an all-wheel drive system with a winter mode to enhance traction in snow.
All XC90s come with Roll Stability Control, an active safety system designed to reduce the possibility of a rollover by applying brakes and modulating engine power. All XC90s also have electronic stability control to help keep the car on the driver's intended line as well as full-length, curtain-style head-protection airbags that cover every row of seats.
Leather seating is standard. So are 17-inch wheels, 12 beverage holders, three power outlets, a CD changer, trip computer, power windows, doors, locks and mirrors, and an eight-way power driver's seat with memory.
In addition to its different engine, transmission and all-wheel drive, the T6 comes with speed-sensitive power steering, eight-way power for the front passenger's seat, a six-CD changer, auto-dimming interior rear-view mirror and memory function for the exterior mirrors.
The V8 adds ventilated disc brakes instead of the solid rotors on the other models, self-leveling rear suspension, a third-row seat with air conditioning, rear audio system with head phones and color-coordinated body trim.
Stand-alone options include bi-xenon headlamps ($700), various metallic paint colors ($450), electronically controlled all-wheel drive for the base model ($1,775), Volvo's new blind-spot information system ($700), rear parking assist ($400), a navigation system ($2,120), 18-inch wheels ($750), a premium sound system ($775), subwoofer ($300), and rear-seat entertainment system with two headrest-mounted seven-inch color screens ($1,995).
Available on the 2.5T is a popular Premium Package ($2,995) that includes leather seating, a power front passenger seat, memory mirrors, a power moonroof and upgraded audio with a six CD changer. The T6 offers a Touring Package ($1,595) with 18-inch wheels, power folding exterior mirrors, premium sound system and cargo cover. The Versatility Package ($2,100) for the 2.5T and T6 includes the third row of seats and its accessories, starting with separate controls for the rear air conditioning unit and audio systems, as well as a built-in second-row child booster seat.