2021 Volvo XC60 Pricing, Review, and Specs

2021 Volvo XC60 Parked in the woods near Stuart, FL
 

Handsomely styled and thoughtfully designed, the 2021 Volvo XC60 offers a unique Scandinavian take on the compact luxury SUV, which earned it an Editors' Choice award. A trio of four-cylinder powertrains is offered—the turbocharged T5 is standard, while a turbocharged-and-supercharged version called T6 and a plug-in hybrid T8 variant are optional—all providing ample power and decent fuel efficiency. The XC60's upscale cabin puts real pressure on rivals such as the Audi Q5, the BMW X3, and the Mercedes-Benz GLC-class, and its suite of standard driver-assistance features gives it an edge in the safety department. A 12.3-inch digital gauge display and a vertically oriented 9.0-inch infotainment screen are both standard, as well, and provide plenty of options for connectivity. The infotainment's slow startup, though, is a rare annoyance in an otherwise exquisite package.

 

What's New for 2021?

The XC60 receives several new standard features for 2021, including blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, LED headlights, a wireless smartphone charging pad, and front parking sensors, as well as a new 19-inch wheel design and power-folding exterior mirrors with an auto-dimming function. Volvo has eliminated AM radio on the XC60, but fans of the format will still be able to listen via a provided app, Tune-In, through the infotainment system. The R-Design model receives a blacked-out exterior trim treatment, and models equipped with the T8 plug-in hybrid powertrain get the Recharge name to align them with the all-electric XC40 Recharge SUV that launched this year. The luxurious Inscription trim receives a new Lounge package, which adds massaging front seats, a Nubuck headliner, and leather-wrapped sun visors. Sadly, Volvo has replaced a favorite of ours, Bursting Blue, in the XC60's color palette with Savile Grey Metallic.


2021 Volvo XC60 Polestar V6 Engine

Engine, Transmission, and Performance

Volvo offers three different powertrains—T5, T6, and T8—in the XC60, all mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard but upgrading to either the T6 or T8 powertrains adds all-wheel drive. Under the hood of base T5-badged XC60s is a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder making 250 horsepower. Its 6.4-second zero-to-60-mph time in our testing is adequate but unremarkable. The T6 is powered by the same turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder as the T5, but a supercharger is added for more oomph. With 316 ponies in its stable, it feels peppier and its performance on our test track was measurably quicker. The plug-in hybrid T8 version borrows the T6's engine and pairs it with a set of electric motors for a total of 400 horsepower or 415 in the Polestar Engineered model. The XC60 takes corners well, feels tied to the road while cruising, and changes directions with confidence, but doesn't inspire hooliganism like the Porsche Macan. The ride can feel a touch harsh when driving over rougher stretches of road, but on smooth sections it's agreeable and calm.

 

Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG

The EPA estimates that front-wheel drive T5 models should deliver 22 mpg city and 29 mpg highway; adding all-wheel drive drops both of those numbers by 1 mpg. The more powerful T6 all-wheel drive model carries ratings of 20 mpg city and 27 mpg highway. In our real-world highway fuel-economy testing, the T5 and the T6 XC60s exceeded their EPA estimates with 29- and 28-mpg results, respectively; however, so did the Lexus RX350, which sailed on to a 31-mpg result.

Spacious luxurious interior inside the 2021 Volvo XC60

Interior, Comfort, and Cargo

With interior styling and rich materials that mirror more expensive Volvos, the XC60 is like having your cake and eating it, too. The quiet, comfortable cabin also provides adult-sized accommodations in both rows. Clean lines and high-quality materials add a distinctly Scandinavian flavor to the XC60's cabin—and we'd expect nothing less from a modern Volvo. Decent cargo-hauling capability puts the XC60 mid-pack among its rivals in our testing; with its rear seats folded, we fit 20 of our carry-on suitcases. Interior cubby storage is limited, and the sole cargo-area bin is among the smallest we've measured.

2021 Volvo XC60 Infotainment System

Infotainment and Connectivity

A 9.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system Volvo calls Sensus Connect is standard on the XC60 and comes with both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capability. Bluetooth connectivity and an onboard Wi-Fi hotspot powered by a 4G LTE data connection are also offered across the range. Navigation with real-time traffic and weather updates is available on the base Momentum trim and standard on all other models.

Safety and Driver-Assistance Features

The XC60 received a five-star safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and snagged a Top Safety Pick award from the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS). Volvo's commitment to safety is evident in the XC60, with driver-assistance features such as automated emergency braking and lane-keeping assist made standard across the range. Key safety features include:

  •  Standard automated emergency braking with pedestrian detection
  •  Standard lane-departure warning with lane-keeping assist
  •  Available adaptive cruise control with semi-autonomous driving mode

Warranty and Maintenance Coverage

Of its rivals in this segment, the XC60 has an appealing warranty policy. Three years of scheduled maintenance is a convenience that Volvo buyers won't need to pay for separately, either.

  •  Limited warranty covers 4 years or 50,000 miles
  •  Powertrain warranty covers 4 years or 50,000 miles
  •  Hybrid components are covered for 8 years or 100,000 miles
  •  Complimentary scheduled maintenance is covered for 3 years or 36,000 miles

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