44: Volvo S60/V60 – Closing in on its German rivals

Top cars for 2020: Both versions get Volvo closer to the heart of the premium sports saloon segment than ever before

 

Volvo’s mid-size saloon and estate offering is, in some ways, classically Volvo – smart-looking cars that major on safety and comfort. That, though, tells only part of the story, for the S60 and V60 get Volvo closer to the heart of the premium sports saloon segment than ever before.

Neither is, perhaps, brilliant to drive, but both feel hugely satisfying from behind the wheel, with good steering response and a composed chassis. Both have excellent interiors - think down-sized XC90, with the big portrait-style touchscreen and the best seats this side of an Eames showroom and you’re getting there - and both are practical.

Needless to say, it’s the estate V60 that’s the more practical, but the saloon S60 isn’t bad from a four-door point of view. The biggest difference between the two is that you can still buy a V60 with a diesel engine - Volvo has shunned diesel power for the S60, leaving only the plugin-hybrid T8 as a potential fuel-saver in the range. Rapid T5 250hp turbo (in either version) is only a pale shadow of the hare-brained 850 T5s of the 1990s. Sadly.

Best model: V60 D4 Inscription for €51,573.

Price range: €42,950 to €60,801. Finance from €436 per month.

Co2 emissions: 39 to 169g/km.

Sum up: Not boxy, still good.