Volvo’s 2018 V60 wagon offers the room and versatility of a small SUV with the ride and handling of a European sports sedan. Enthusiast drivers will love the 300-plus horsepower in the R-Design and Polestar, while those who spend weekends outdoors will gravitate toward the added ground clearance and Haldex all-wheel drive in the V60 Cross Country.
You'll Like The 2018 Volvo V60 If...
If your cargo-carrying needs declare “SUV,” but your playful side begs for a sporty European sports sedan, the 2018 Volvo V60 wagon can satisfy both demands. An excellent reputation for safety doesn’t hurt either, nor does the V60’s sleek good looks.
You May Not Like The 2018 Volvo V60 If...
There are a number of larger SUVs with more room, more power and more seats, and you don’t even have to leave the Volvo family to find them. The V90 and V90 Cross Country offer similar wagon attributes, but in a larger package.
For 2018, Volvo drops the base V60 making the Dynamic the entry-level trim. The V60 sees a few features and package reorganized to make pricing more attractive until an all-new V60 arrives early in 2019.
Not surprisingly, the 2018 V60 has all the Swedish refinement and simplicity long associated with Volvo cars. While we'll likely have to wait for next-gen versions before getting the astoundingly beautiful interior treatment and the latest tech upgrades of Volvo's new crop of cars like the XC90 and V90, that of the V60 is still quite attractive. All models seat five passengers and have intuitive controls -- just look at the human-figure ventilation directives! And because this is a wagon, there's ample cargo room in back, and even more if you fold the rear seats.
This may be the best-looking of Volvo's "60" series of cars, which includes the S60 sedan and XC60 SUV. The V60's profile is graceful and elegant, with a sloping roofline that extends the cargo area, but without making it look like a sedan wearing a backpack. In fact, some of us prefer it over the stubby-trunk look of the S60, and still others like its sleek, low-to-the-ground stance compared to the XC60. The Volvo V60 Cross Country sits a bit higher than the standard model, but the result is rugged, not awkward.
In the 2018 Volvo V60, one finds a wagon that rides and handles like a well-heeled sports sedan, as comfortable on long stretches of highway as it is winding mountain roads. Should the road come to an end, however, the V60 Cross Country’s 7.9 inches of ground clearance allow one to continue unimpeded. For the record, that’s more ground clearance than the Audi Allroad or VW Alltrack, but about an inch shy of the Subaru Outback Touring. Although no match for the BMW 3 Series, the V60’s acceleration, handling and braking all fall into the performance-oriented category, making it much more fun to drive than the aforementioned Outback. Tying it all together are the V60's lightweight, high-compression 4-cylinder engines. Their power output feels far more than the 2.0-liter displacement would suggest. Base T5 models make a commendable 240 horsepower, while R-Design and the limited-edition Polestar T6 cars make 302 and 362 horsepower, respectively. A smooth-shifting 8-speed Geartronic automatic is the only transmission choice.
The 2018 Volvo V60 Dynamic wagon has a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) starting at $39,245 in front-drive form. As you climb trims, that price increases, with R-Design models just under $50,000 before options. If you're willing to spend the $60,000-plus it takes to buy a V60 Polestar, know that they're in short supply: Only about 200 Polestars have been allocated to the U.S. market, and that includes S60 Polestar sedans. The V60 Cross Country starts closer to $43,000. At its base price, the Volvo V60, even in all-wheel-drive form, undercuts the Audi A4 Allroad and BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo by several thousand dollars, while the more similar V60 Cross Country is in line with those competitors. Be sure to check the KBB.com Fair Purchase Price to see what others in your area are paying for their new V60. Resale value is expected to trail that of the Audi Allroad.
The 2018 V60 is offered in three trims (Dynamic, R-Design and Polestar), while the V60 Cross Country comes in just two (Cross Country and Cross Country Platinum). The base trim is now the Dynamic which includes such amenities as an 8-way-power driver‘s seat with power lumbar, leather seating, a power moonroof, 18-inch wheels, dual-zone automatic climate controls, 160-watt 8-speaker audio system with 7-inch command screen, Bluetooth, USB/auxiliary input and a Wi-Fi hotspot. Being that the V60 is a Volvo, safety features such as low-speed automatic braking, auto high beams, active bending-light headlights and a rear fog light are also standard.
Climb trims and you'll get a better and better equipped European wagon. Additional amenities include a harman/kardon premium audio system, heated front and rear seats, and universal garage remote. Among the optional safety and driving aids are adaptive cruise control, collision-warning system with full auto brake and pedestrian/cyclist detection, blind-spot monitoring, lane-keep assist and parking sensors. A sport chassis and integrated roof rails are also offered. All-wheel drive (AWD) can be had in lieu of front-drive (FWD) for lower models and is standard on the V60 Cross Country that also includes navigation, 18-inch wheels and skidplates.
Although the name may sound like some fancy new Swedish hybrid system, Volvo’s Drive-E represents a family of engines propelled solely by fossil fuel. However, the Drive-E design does deliver impressive power and fuel economy from one of the most refined 4-cylinder turbos on the market.
With an additional 2.6 inches of ground clearance and capable Haldex all-wheel-drive setup, the V60 Cross Country can tackle mild off-road situations as well as unplowed roads and nasty snow drifts.
Under the Hood
Volvo has streamlined its engine offerings using a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder for all V60 trims. But we'll say it again: These are phenomenal engines that punch above their weight. At the very least, a turbocharged T5 version makes 240 horsepower and can move this mover from 0-60 mph in 5.7 seconds. T6 versions are turbocharged and supercharged. Yes, they use both kinds of forced induction, making 302 horsepower in T6 R-Design models and a whopping 362 horsepower in the V60 Polestar, which enables it to hit 60 mph in 4.5 seconds. Note that V60 Cross Country models are available only with the 240-horsepower engine. All models are connected to an 8-speed automatic transmission. The V60 is rated to tow up to 3,500 pounds.
2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4 (T5)
240 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm
258 lb-ft of torque @ 1,500-4,800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 25/36 mpg (FWD), 22/33 mpg (AWD), 22/30 mpg (V60 Cross Country AWD)
2.0-liter turbocharged and supercharged inline-4 (T6 AWD R-Design)
302 horsepower @ 5,700 rpm
295 lb-ft of torque @ 2,100-4,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 22/32 mpg
2.0-liter turbocharged and supercharged inline-4 (V60 Polestar)
362 horsepower @ 7,000 rpm
347 lb-ft of torque @3,100-5,100 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/27 mpg
Recent polling reveals that Americans still don’t like station wagons, which leads us to conclude that those surveyed have never experienced the 2018 Volvo V60. Combining Swedish elegance with seductive styling and potent performance, the V60 is ideal for urbanites needing maximum interior volume without the bulky size and clumsy handling that accompany some SUVs. Enthusiast drivers will love the 300-plus horsepower in the R-Design and Polestar, while those who spend weekends outdoors will gravitate toward the added ground clearance and a rugged all-wheel-drive system of the V60 Cross Country. If you’ve been shopping the BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo and Audi Allroad, you might find a less expensive alternative in the Volvo V60.