Volvo XC60 Review 2024

Volvo XC60 At A Glance

Honest John Overall Rating
The Volvo XC60 shrugs off the idea that SUVs have to be sporty to drive. Instead, it delivers hugely on comfort and refinement, with plenty of technology to boot.

+Premium image, supported by handsome styling and a luxurious interior. Drives with refinement, and strong performance across the engine range. Lots of safety equipment included.

-Not particularly involving to drive. Lags behind key rivals for boot capacity. Infotainment touchscreen can be fiddly to use.

New prices start from £30,500
Insurance Groups are between 28–43
On average it achieves 73% of the official MPG figure

Volvo was traditionally known for building estate cars, but has become very experienced with SUVs since launching the original XC90 back in 2002. The smaller Volvo XC60 channels that know-how into a refined and calming vehicle that offers a credible alternative to the BMW X3 and Audi Q5.

First launched in 2017, the second-generation Volvo XC60 helped continue the Swedish brand’s march into the premium market. It channels the handsome styling of the larger, seven-seat XC90 – and borrows its mechanical underpinnings, too. 

The Volvo XC60 may not come with seven seats, but it is still aimed at families. That means a blend of space and everyday usability, with all-wheel drive fitted as standard across the range. An eight-speed automatic gearbox is included on all versions, too.

Although Volvo is working towards offering solely electric vehicles by 2030, the Volvo XC60 maintains a host of engine options. There is even still a diesel, which is useful for those covering bigger mileages, along with a pair of turbocharged petrol engines.

The plug-in hybrid Recharge models are particularly noteworthy, with the potential to cover almost 50 miles on battery power alone. The Volvo XC60 T8 Recharge boasts serious performance, its 455PS output helping to dispatch the 0-62mph sprint in just 4.9 seconds. 

When it comes to off-road ability, Volvo has tailored the XC60 to cope with farm tracks and slippery fields. Even so, SUVs such as the Land Rover Discovery Sport will be better options if you need more serious all-terrain prowess.

The Volvo XC60 is not the greatest off-roader, then, but this matters little when it drives so well on the road. Most versions come with a conventional suspension setup, which effectively filters out most ruts and bumps in the tarmac. The range-topping Ultimate version upgrades to air suspension, offering a number of different settings. Selecting Comfort mode gives the Volvo XC60 a genuinely limo-like ride quality.

With such a focus on comfort and refinement, the Volvo XC60 isn’t the most engaging SUV to drive. Its steering is light, but lacks feel, and there is slightly more body-roll than would be experienced in an Audi Q5 or BMW X3. Still, given the relaxing nature of the Volvo XC60, this is unlikely to be a deal-breaker. 

Inside, the Volvo XC60 is as well-made as it is luxurious, with a finely measured dose of Scandinavian minimalism. Everything majors on quality, with plentiful leather trim included as standard. Also helping to justify the premium price tag is a long list of equipment, with all versions benefiting from satellite navigation, a 12.3-inch digital dashboard and a 9.0-inch infotainment touchscreen. 

There is room for five people, at a push, although boot capacity is smaller than the Volvo XC60's closest competitors, including the Jaguar F-Pace and Audi Q5.

Even alongside other premium European SUVs, the Volvo XC60 stands out for placing its outright emphasis on comfort and luxury over sportiness and dynamism. It makes for a relaxing and refined driving

Ask Honest John

I have all-season tyres but the ride quality is poor, is something wrong?

"My Volvo XC60 SE 2017 model is equipped with Pirelli Scorpion Verde tyres. These give a very hard ride but are cross-climate. This model doesn't have two suspension settings that I think some models had. Back seat passengers have complained and questioned whether something is wrong. Is there a better option to get a softer ride? I really don't fancy changing tyres between summer and winter but the car does seem a bit skittish in winter conditions which may be down to the local authority not gritting enough as last winter we had several cars wind up in the ditch and through the hedge on bends nearby so maybe I shouldn't blame the car or tyres!"
We would normally expect an all-season tyre to offer decent ride quality on account of the deep tread blocks, so the fact that you are suffering from poor ride quality may suggest some other issue. In terms of tyres, you could look at changing to a smaller diameter wheel or selecting a tyre that has a taller sidewall (aspect ratio) than your current tyre, as this should improve the ride. You may also wish to have your suspension checked over by your dealer or an independent specialist in order to confirm there is nothing amiss.
Answered by David Ross

What tyres will give a longer life?

"I currently drive a Volvo XC60 2020 with 27,000 miles It is fitted with Pirreli P Zero tyres, they wear evenly but I only get 15000 miles out of the front tyres and the back ones are still the original ones. Can you recommend a tyre that would have a longer life? "
15,000 miles for a set of front tyres is low, but not beyond the bounds of what is reasonable for a front-wheel-drive car. If you are looking for a tyre with the potential for longer life we would suggest looking at a tyre with low rolling resistance rather than a high-grip performance tyre or an all-season or winter tyre. We would suggest looking at tyres such as the Continental Eco Contact 6 and the Hankook Ventus Prime 3 X, both of which are A-rated for fuel efficiency, but it is worth bearing in mind that switching to a tyre such as this from your current P Zeros may result in a reduction in vehicle handling performance.
Answered by David Ross

What's the best hybrid for towing a caravan?

"I have a twin axle Swift caravan of about 1.7t that I need to tow. In an ideal world I'd like an at least a 2.0 litre 4x4 with a high ride and diesel/electric that means I go electric most of the time, but diesel when towing. I'm getting very confused with all the details about SUVs. My budget is up to about £30K."
It sounds like a petrol plug-in hybrid might suit your needs. They can be charged and used like an EV for your day-to-day driving while having the ability to tow a caravan further afield. How about a used Volvo XC60 T8? It's a very desirable premium SUV with plenty of grunt for towing. It has an official towing capacity of up to 2100kg so should comfortably tow your caravan. An Audi Q5 TFSI e is worth a look, too.
Answered by Andrew Brady

I need a comfortable car with good ground clearance and lots of space, what should I choose?

"I would be grateful if you could help us in our quest for a new car. Currently we have a 2016 Citroen Grand C4 Picasso This is a great car as far as space utilisation is concerned, especially the boot which is large and suits us well. However, the ride is poor and is certainly not up to Citroens long term reputation for ride comfort. So, we are looking for a car with a boot no smaller than the Citroen's but with as smooth a ride as possible (not bothered too much about so called 'handling'!). We also like a higher driving position and good ground clearance. So probably an SUV or a high riding estate would be suitable but the ride quality followed by boot size are the priorities. Budget for new or nearly new (up to 2 years old), up to to £40,000ish for the right car but preferably less."
To keep the amount of interior space you have now without a bigger footprint and some ground clearance, we would suggest an SUV. As ride quality is also a priority, we would suggest a Volvo XC60. Go for an SE or SE Lux model rather than the R-Design trim, as the R-Design has larger alloy wheels that don't help the ride quality. You'd also have a choice of petrol or diesel engines, plenty of space and comfort and a high driving position. £40,000 would get you a very recent model with low mileage, but even £16,000 would get you a 2014 SE Lux diesel with less than 50,000 miles.
Answered by David Ross
More Questions

What does a Volvo XC60 cost?