For the third year running, our experts have voted for Volvo to snag AutoTrader’s Best Wagon award with its pretty and practical V60 and V60 Cross Country wagon duo. Our experts considered every single wagon available for Canadians to buy, voting for this handsome Volvo over the segment’s finalists, the Audi A6 wagons (Allroad and RS6 Avant), Audi A4 Allroad, and the Mercedes-Benz E-Class and C-Class wagons.
Volvo has been in the wagon business since Elvis started shaking his hips, and even with buyers stampeding headlong to SUVs, Volvo has steadfastly kept its allegiance to the station wagon, estate car, long-roof sedan, shooting brake, or whatever you wish to call these eminently practical conveyances.
While most folks don’t usually equate high style with station wagons, Volvo has long shed its boxy image and the V60 is surely one of the sexiest wagons out there. It does not flaunt a gaping grille or exaggerated styling cues, but seduces with rakish proportions, complex side sculpting, and classic big, vertical taillights. Up front, we are welcomed by Volvo’s signature Thor’s Hammer headlight treatment. The V60’s cabin is equally intriguing, rocking a clean, Nordic aesthetic featuring fine metal detailing, available natural woods, and, on some models, a unique Orrefors crystal gear selector. This interior shows its best in lighter hues and we can’t say enough about the über cool City Weave fabric seats.
Standard is Volvo’s Sensus Connect interface with its large portrait-oriented touchscreen. As there is a dearth of hard buttons on the dash (Nordic minimalism, remember?), almost every function of the car must be accessed through this poke, pinch, swipe, and ultimately smudgy portal. This interface irked some of our experts, and it proved to be about the only real gripe we can level at this car. Oh, and having to pay $1,000 to get a heated steering wheel (along with heated wipers and rear seats) is just so… European.
All Volvo V60s are powered by a 2.0L four-cylinder engine (turbocharged or turbo and supercharged) and run with an eight-speed automatic transmission. This wagon comes in a variety of flavours, spanning from the base 250-hp $51,250 T6 AWD Momentum model to the 415-horsepower, 494 lb-ft of torque T8 eAWD Polestar Engineered at $83,200. The middle-ground is occupied by the sporty all-wheel drive 316-hp R-Design ($55,950). The ritzier Inscription trim has been discontinued for 2022.
For many V60 shoppers, the sweet spot will be the $51,250 Cross Country, which seems tailor-made for a Canadian audience. With its raised ride height, all-wheel drive, and rugged body cladding, it’s ready for our winters. Having the less powerful and more efficient 250-hp turbocharged four-cylinder engine under its hood surely appeals to our pragmatic side, as do the standard textile and vinyl seats, which, if you choose Blond, nets the City Weave fabric (which we highly recommend). With its longer suspension travel and higher-profile 18-inch tires, the Cross Country delivers a more compliant ride than its lower-riding stablemates.
You want something greener? The entry point for an electrified V60 is the $71,100 V60 Recharge R-Design (formerly Inscription) plug-in hybrid. This wagon’s complex drivetrain uses the supercharged/turbocharged 2.0L gas engine to power the front wheels while the rear wheels get their urge from a 65-kW motor powered by a 11.6-kWh battery. Combined, this system puts out 400 horsepower and a formidable 472 lb-ft of torque. The Recharge, like the boss T8 eAWD Polestar Engineered, will travel up to 35 km on pure electric range.
Standard safety features for the 2022 Volvo V60 includes front collision mitigation, blind spot monitor with rear cross traffic alert, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, and rear park sensors. Head-up display, navigation, and adaptive cruise control are upgrades.
Wagon lovers are a select (and very cool) bunch, and our AutoTrader experts feel the 2022 Volvo V60 with its wide range of models, competitive pricing, fine driving dynamics, and exquisite build quality caters best to the long-roof loyalists. And did we mention it was dead sexy?