The XC90 was Volvo's first SUV. It was one of the first in the Luxury SUV class when it debuted in 2002 and remained one of the best throughout it's life. It was time for a change to the stalwart XC90, and an all-new SUV was introduced for 2016.
This new model is big. Both in size and in its importance to Volvo. It's uniquely handsome on the outside, with Thor's Hammer headlights, exterior lines that are both square and curvaceous at the same time, and squiggly Volvo taillights.
Inside, the seats are wonderfully supportive, in the way that Volvo is doing better than anyone of late. The interior design takes Volvo's usual minimalistic design and takes the style and elegance up a notch. Supple leathers, soft touch closures, beautiful woodwork or metal trims. It even turns on the accessories automatically when you get in. The new design also massively reduces the number of buttons found in the XC90's older stablemates like the S60.
That interior has ample room for five, with room in the third row for medium-sized adults. With the seats folded down, there is massive cargo space in the rear. The touchscreen system controls everything but is quick and responsive.
When driving the XC90, expect a ride that is busier than the competition, SUVs like the Audi Q7, unless you get an air suspension equipped model. We call that feature mandatory in our comparison test. The interior is better than the BMW X5 or the Audi, but acceleration from the 2.0L engines is slower.
For 2017, the 250 hp 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder becomes the base engine. Step up to T6, and there is a 316 hp version of the same. Both come with an eight-speed automatic and all-wheel drive. For more power, look to the T8 hybrid, which has its own guide. All XC90 models have Volvo City Safety which adds automatic braking and pedestrian detection.
Base T5 comes with power adjustable front seats with heating, and a power tailgate. There is an 8.0-inch screen, panoramic sunroof, and 18-inch wheels.
There are several option packages available, including full LED headlights, and a vision pack with power folding mirrors, blind spot alerts, cross traffic alert, and surround view cameras. A convenience package adds adaptive cruise with lane keeping along with self-parking. Momentum Plus adds interior illumination, a 12.0-inch driver's display, and the LED headlight pack. The Climate package adds a heated steering wheel, heated windshield, rear seats, and washer nozzles. The climate package is available with a head-up display. A Bowers & Wilkins premium audio system is also available.
T5 Momentum adds four-zone climate control to base T5 and has the same option packages available. T6 Drive-E adds the more powerful engine. It also has leather seating, 19-inch alloys, navigation, and road-edge detection with automatic avoidance. It comes with the same option packages as T5, but also adds Nappa leather sport seats and the air suspension option. The infotainment screen grows to 9.3-inches.
T6 R-design has unique R-design trim inside and out. There is a special grille and spoiler, and Nubuck sport seats. It also comes with full LED headlights, 20-inch wheels, and a 12.3-inch instrument cluster display. R-design can be had with the vision package, convenience package, climate package, and a leather interior pack that adds leather to the dash and rear doors. It can be had with the Bowers & Wilkins audio system and air suspension. T6 Inscription adds special Inscription trim in place of the R-design trim, along with ventilated front seats, leather dash and door panels. There are also sun curtains for the rear windows. It can be had with the vision package, convenience package, climate package, and head-up display. Bowers & Wilkins audio system and air suspension are available.
Fuel economy for the XC 90 is rated at 11.3 L/100 km city and 8.4 highway for the T5, and 11.5/9.6 for T6 models.